Marta, Morgan score as Pride top Spirit 3-0
The Pride moved into fifth place with the win

Marta and Alex Morgan both scored as the Orlando Pride beat the Washington Spirit 3-0 on Tuesday night in front of a crowd of 4,273 at Orlando City Stadium in Orlando, Florida.

All three goals came in a 12 minute span in the second half as the Pride moved themselves into a tie for 5th place with Sky Blue FC before the two teams face each other on Saturday night.

Though the goals came after halftime, the Pride were off and running from the start with a few early chances, courtesy of Marta, who was all over the field in the first half with a few of her patented moves.



The Spirit also had a few nice chances in the first half, but neither team could find the back of the net. In the 22nd minute, Cheyna Williams, who scored on Friday in Washington’s big 4-1 win over Sky Blue FC, took a few nice touches to get around Pride midfielder Alanna Kennedy, but her shot went just wide.



Marta’s goal came in the 52nd minute to give Orlando the 1-0 lead. After a goal kick from Spirit goalkeeper Stephanie Labbé, Pride midfielder Maddy Evans won the header at midfield, sending it to Marta, who brought down the high ball. Marta then picked out Morgan, holding up her run to stay onside. The give-and-go was on as Marta sprinted up the field and Morgan passed it back to her. Marta then outran the Spirit defensive line and, as Labbé tried to come out to make a play, dribbled around the keeper. While falling down, Marta hit a right-footed shot from a tight-angle and into the net for her ninth goal of the season.

Five minutes later, the Pride doubled the lead. Kennedy sent a long ball over the top as Morgan made a run down the center of the field. Labbé came out of the box to try to intercept it, but only had enough time to head the ball away from Morgan. Labbé’s header went to the middle of the field and right to Camila, 40 yards from goal. Camila took one touch to chip  it over Labbé for her fourth goal of the season.

The final goal of the night came in the 64th minute on a nice pass from Steph Catley. The left back launched a left-footed cross from the left-wing and over the top to Morgan on the right side of the field, hitting her in stride. Morgan let the ball bounce once, then hammered a right-footed blast to the near post and out of the reach of Labbé.

The Spirit, who came off a big win on Friday, could not find a shot on goal in the match and finished the match with eight total shots compared to the Pride’s 17.


The Pride now face Sky Blue FC on Saturday night with both teams tied on 23 points, just one behind Seattle Reign FC for the fourth and final playoff spot.


The Spirit will host the Breakers on Saturday in the NWSL Game of the Week on Lifetime on Saturday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. ET.

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