Ten days ago the Houston Dash recorded their second win and kicked off a two game winning streak with a 2-1 comeback victory at Western New York. Now, the Dash welcome the Flash to the heat and humidity of Houston, looking to make it three in a row.
The Flash ended a rough five match stretch this weekend with a blowout win over Portland Thorns FC. Both teams will be missing players to international duty for this game.
Date: June 11, 2014
Time: 6:30pm CST
Location: The Oven
Television: CSN Plus
Live Stream: YouTube
Western New York (4-5-2), 5th Place
Western New York, ranked 5th in our power rankings, ended a poor run of matches with a 5-0 win over Portland Thorns FC on Saturday. Despite missing Abby Wambach, out since she left the match against Houston early, the Flash set a team record for most goals scored in a match.
Samantha Kerr and Carli Lloyd both had big matches with a brace and an assist apiece. Lloyd, along with Wambach, is unavailable against Houston due to national team duty. While the Dash will be pleased to not have to face both players, the Flash still have plenty of dangerous pieces including the aforementioned Kerr and Vicky Losada.
The Flash struggled with the pace of the Dash forwards in the initial meeting between these two sides. If they wish to reverse the result, they will need to find a way to slow down Tiffany McCarty and Kealia Ohai. If the speedy pair are able to run at the Western New York defense with a full head of steam, it may be a long evening for the Flash.
Heat and humidity may well play an important role in this match as well. Houston summer is in full swing; the Dash have become more accustomed to the conditions through practice the last couple of weeks. The Flash will not be ready for the conditions and should run out of steam late in the match.
Houston Dash (3-7-1), 7th Place
The Dash are flying high on the back of consecutive wins. Good performances finally have turned into points which has brought increased confidence. The forwards are brimming with confidence and scoring for fun at the moment. The back line is coming off of its first clean sheet of the season.
Whitney Engen will not be available due to national team duty nor will Meghan Klingenberg, who was not able to play over the weekend. Also gone on national team duty with Austria is Nina Burger.
Burger has been a big part of what the Dash have done offensively in recent weeks. It will be interesting to see whether the strong forward play continues in her absence or is there a drop off. With Burger gone and Lindsay Elston only just returning from injury, the forward group looks a bit thin.
Ideally, given the heat and humidity, the Dash could bring on McCarty or Ohai late on to run at tired Western New York legs. However, both players will likely need to start.
Tori McCombs and Dominique Richardson will be brought into the squad for this match in order to supplement the squad given the international departures.
The Dash will continue their recent strong performance and record their first ever win at home, 2-1.
Western New York Flash: Adrianna Franch (out)
Houston Dash: Brittany Bock (out), Lauren Sesselmann (out), Lindsay Elston (questionable), Kika Toulouse (probable)
Western New York Flash: GK – Williams; Def – Williamson, Taylor, Reynolds, Edmonds, ; Mid – Zerboni, Salem, Losada, Kerr K; Fwd - Martin, Bermudez
Houston Dash: GK – McLeod; Def – Ochs, Diggs, Ohale, Romero; Mid – Kyle, Edwards, Noyola; Fwd – Ohai, Masar, McCarty
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