The Houston Dash on their first ever West Coast road trip to California earned a hard fought 1-1 road draw with Angel FC. Played before a rowdy home crowd at Banc of California Stadium, Houston extended its unbeaten streak to six games.
Both sides were unable to dent the back of the net for lack of trying. Together they combined for 33 shots and 15 corners. The totality of it was that stellar goalkeeping kept the score exactly where it ended clean on both sides.
Angel keeper Didi Haracic came up big twice against Dash midfielder Sophie Schmidt beginning in the 10th minute of play. The second was a drive from outside the 18 in the 33rd minute by Schmidt that forced a diving stop by Haracic. Both Marisa Viggiano and Shea Groom hit the crossbar in the second half.
Angel FC best chances came on back to back opportunities near the 70th minute. Jun Endo's shot was stopped by Dash keeper Jane Campbell but the rebound fell right to Christen Press. Campbell smothered her attempt from inside the box.
Houston created the draw without the presence of Rachel Daly gone to international duty. They also removed Nichelle Prince and Sophie Schmidt for precautionary reasons giving others a chance to step up. Goalkeeper Jane Campbell who earned her fourth clean sheet highlighted that point in her postgame comments.
“All season, it doesn't take just the 11 that start the game. It takes all 28 players. Whether they're here or at home, on away trips, everybody is super important and super crucial to our performance. The bench has done amazing. Every game they've given us a spark, regardless of who comes on. And that's their job, that's everybody's job is to perform and really proud of everybody.”
The Dash will be back home for home game Sunday June 12th against Portland. The Thorns were one of the teams Houston has defeated on the road during this stretch. Viggiano succinctly summarized Sunday's challenge.
“Another tough test coming up on Sunday. A lot of recovery right now and just coming out strong when we're back at home, keep this momentum going. We've been playing really good soccer, and I know that we can play even better. So, it's just keeping that in the back of our minds as we head into Sunday.”