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Seattle Reign FC Open 2018 NWSL Season With A Win Against Washington Spirit

Seattle Reign FC defeated the Washington Spirit 2-1 on a chilly Saturday evening on the UW Medicine Pitch at Memorial Stadium.

The first goal of the evening came from a Megan Rapinoe free kick in the 7th minute. Rapinoe served in a curling ball that just snuck in under the cross bar.

The first half saw Washington get some strong looks on goal, but ultimately nothing that goalkeeper Michelle Betos couldn’t handle. Seattle kept the pressure on in the first half when they scored a second goal in the 35th minute. Megan Rapinoe slipped in a through ball for Jodie Taylor to run onto, who then slid it past the keeper to score on her debut.

Rapinoe had a few other good looks in the first half, including a long distance shot from 35 yards out that was just over the crossbar. Seattle nearly made it 3-0 twice near the end of the first half. First, in the 44th minute, Jodie Taylor and Megan Rapinoe combined for a skillful bit of passing that saw Rapinoe through on goal, but goalkeeper Aubrey Bledsoe was able to make the save. Just before the half time whistle blew, Allie Long made a great interception in Washington’s half, but was unable to connect with Rapinoe.

The second half started with Washington shaking off their performance in the first 45 minutes. Through the first 10 minutes of the second half, the Spirit had some dangerous looks on goal, including a free kick from 25 yards out. Washington’s effort paid off in the 68th minute when Joanna Lohman found the back off the net after a bit of skill in the box. Reign FC were able to see out the rest of the second half with a veteran defensive performance led by goalkeeper Michelle Betos. Rapinoe ended the night with a goal and assist.

Reign FC saw four players get their starting debuts. USWNT midfielder Allie Long, defender Theresa Nielsen, defender Megan Oyster, and forward Jodie Taylor all saw their first starts for Seattle. Making her Seattle Reign FC debut from the bench was forward Jasmyne Spencer. With her substitute appearance, Spencer reached 100 all-time NWSL caps. Also seeing her debut on the night was Morgan Andrews. With Steph Catley away at the Asian Cup with Australia, Rumi Utsugi shifted from the defensive midfield to left back.

Reign FC head out on the road for their next match when the club takes on Sky Blue FC on Sunday, April 15 at 2:00 p.m. PT.

Reign FC’s next home match is on Saturday, May 12 when they take on Sky Blue FC at 7:00 p.m. PT on the UW Medicine Pitch at Memorial Stadium. To purchase tickets, visit reignfc.com/tickets or call the Reign FC ticket office at (855) REIGN-FC.

NWSL Match Report

Match: Seattle Reign FC vs Washington Spirit
Date: March 24, 2018
Venue: Memorial Stadium
Kickoff: 7:00pm PT
Attendance: 3,561
Weather: Clear and chilly

Scoring Summary:

SEA: Rapinoe 7′, Taylor (Rapinoe) 35′
WAS: Lohman (Banini) 68′

Lineups:

Seattle Reign FC: Betos; Utsugi, Barnes, Oyster, Nielsen; Long, Fishlock, Yanez (77′ Andrews); Rapinoe ©, Taylor, Kawasumi (62′ Spencer)

Substitutes Not Used: Addo, Bauer, Gay, Westphal

Washington Spirit: Bledsoe; Dydasco, Church, Smith, Johnson; Sullivan, Howard (62′ Ordega), Huster (46′ Lohman), Banini; Pugh, Hatch

Substitutes Not Used: Aedo, Haracic, Proffitt, Solaun

Stats Summary: SEA/WAS

Shots: 24/17
Shots on Goal: 12/9
Saves: 8/10
Corner Kicks: 4/1
Fouls: 15/8
Offside: 3/1

Misconduct Summary:

63′ Rapinoe Yellow Card (SEA)
90′ Andrews Yellow Card (SEA)

Officials:

Referee: Ekaterina
Assistant Referees: Alicia Messer, Dan Stupca
Fourth Official: Levi Rippy

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