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Courage to Face Houston Dash in First South Pod Match of the NWSL Fall Series

September 10, 2020 - National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) - North Carolina Courage News Release

Cary, NC - The North Carolina Courage will make their long-awaited return to WakeMed Soccer Park to face the Houston Dash this Friday, September 11 at 7 p.m. ET. The game marks the Courage's first match of the 2020 NWSL fall series, to be followed by subsequent matches against the Orlando Pride and the Dash.

In the last meeting between the two teams, the Courage recorded a dominant win, defeating the Dash 5-2 behind a standout performance from Kristen Hamilton. Hamilton scored four of the Courage's five goals, tying the NWSL single-game record for goals scored. Lynn Williams also recorded a goal during the match. Since 2017, the Courage boast a 6-0-1 record when playing against the Dash.

Most recently, the Courage fell 1-0 to the Portland Thorns in the quarterfinal match of the NWSL Challenge Cup. The loss came after four straight wins in the preliminaries, where the Courage topped the Thorns, the Washington Spirit, the Chicago Red Stars, and Sky Blue FC. The Courage will look to bounce back in the fall series, beginning with a victory over the Houston Dash.

As for Houston, the team returns for the fall series with a Challenge Cup title under their belt following a 2-0 win over the Chicago Red Stars in the final match of the tournament. Sophie Schmidt and Shea Groom recorded a goal apiece to secure the victory.

Many new players have been added to Paul Riley's roster ahead of the fall series including Peyton Perea, Danica Evans, Rylee Baisden, Kristina Maksuti, and Ari Romero. NC Courage rookies Addisyn Merrick and Sinclaire Miramontez will have an opportunity to shine as the Courage look to build towards the future during the four-match fall series.

Players to Watch Presented by Aetna:

North Carolina Courage - #27 Addisyn Merrick

Merrick, who made her Courage debut in the Challenge Cup, will look to bolster the Courage defense in Friday's matchup against the Dash. Known for her speed and technical ability, Merrick will look to provide a significant challenge to Houston's offense as she pushes up the flank and sends in crosses.

Houston Dash - #1 Jane Campbell

Campbell played every minute of the NWSL Challenge Cup for the Dash on the way to their title. The goalkeeper made 21 saves and had four clean sheets. Campbell has been known to make big saves against the Courage in the past, including penalty kick saves. Williams and the Courage offense will try to slip in a few shots.

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