The Dash won for the second game in a row Sunday, 3-2 over the Washington Spirit. But the result was at least partially overshadowed by an injury to Kristie Mewis who was taken off on a stretcher midway through the first half after suffering a non-contact left knee injury. There was no immediate word as to the severity of the injury.
It took a few minutes for the Dash to shake off losing Mewis, but they managed to go into halftime in front when Meleana Shim sprung a quick attack with a switching ball out of midfield that sent Nichelle Prince down the left side. As Taylor Smith hustled for a recovery run that never reached its mark, Rachel Daly made a run into the box and finished Prince’s cross in the first minute of stoppage time.
Out of the break it took less than a minute after halftime to double the lead. Kealia Ohai had no runners in the box so she curled a shot from above the 18-yard box that slipped through an open channel and inside the near post. It was Ohai’s first goal since April 29, 2017, much of that time spent recovering from ACL surgery.
Daly and Ohai light up the scoreboard, and the @HoustonDash earn back-to-back wins at home with a 3–2 victory over the @WashSpirit.
Highlights from #HOUvWAS to wrap up #NWSL Week 9 ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/451qSYWYUv
— NWSL (@NWSL) May 28, 2018
Mallory Pugh subbed on in the second half and missed an opportunity to halve the lead when she won and then took a penalty, but her spot kick was turned away by Jane Campbell. By the 54th minute the lead was indeed cut in half. Taylor Smith beat Allysha Chapman and crossed to the far post where Estefania Banini had time to settle and choose her narrow angle to beat Campbell.
The Dash got back to a two-goal advantage in the 78th minute after Linda Motlhalo took a midfield turnover and quickly hit Thembi Kgatlana in behind. Spirit keeper Aubrey Bledsoe came well off her line to challenge but was not able to get there and the all went to Daly who literally walked in her second of the night. Ashley Hatch pounced on a stoppage time giveaway to score the final goal of the night for the Spirit.
The Dash (3-4-4, 13 pts) are now 3-1-2 in their last six and have leaped all the way into 5th place. They are back at BBVA Compass Stadium next Sunday to host the Courage. The Spirit (2-6-2, 8 pts) welcome the Red Stars to the Maryland SoccerPlex on Lifetime this Saturday.
- Houston Dash — Rachel Daly (Nichelle Prince), 46+
- Houston Dash — Kealia Ohai (unassisted), 46
- Washington Spirit — Estefania Banini (Taylor Smith), 54
- Houston Dash — Rachel Daly (Thembi Kgatlana), 78
- Washington Spirit — Ashley Hatch (unassisted), 91+
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