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Know Your Opponent | North Carolina Courage

April 16, 2019 - National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) - Orlando Pride News Release

After opening its season just days ago, the Orlando Pride will look to bounce back from its season-opening defeat on a quick turnaround. The task ahead won't be easy, however, as the Pride hit the road to face the defending Champions in a midweek battle. Here's a look at the North Carolina Courage:

Key Transactions

The Courage are another team that have benefited from roster consistency over the last few years. The team did, however, make one signing that built some buzz in bringing Canada National Team goalkeeper Stephanie Labbé back to the NWSL. Labbé previously played for the Washington Spirit and with fellow goalkeeper Katelyn Rowland out due to injury, the 32-year-old is expected to start all matches leading into the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup.

Recent Form

The Courage head into Wednesday's match after picking up a point in its season opener against the Chicago Red Stars. With the point in hand, the Courage approach the midweek match riding a 14-game point streak, which dates back to June 23 of last year. Of those 14 games, the Courage have scored at least one goal in all but one match with eight total shutouts.

Who's Hot

While there are a number of players to keep an eye on Wednesday night, Crystal Dunn is one that can't be missed. The University of North Carolina product scored the Courage's lone goal on Sunday but her contributions aren't only on the attacking end. Dunn is perhaps the most versatile player in the NWSL, a role she also holds with the U.S. Women's National Team, as she can play anywhere from left fullback to striker.

Head-to-Head

The Courage ran through the league in 2018, posting one of the best-ever performances by a team in women's soccer history. North Carolina saw just one loss during the 24-game regular season, with three wins over the Pride. All-time, the Pride are 2-4-0 against North Carolina, with both wins coming during the 2017 season - including the 2017 finale which saw Alanna Kennedy score a stoppage-time stunner that catapulted the Pride to a 3rd place finish.

Rasmussen College Fun Fact

While player/team connections are frequent in a nine-team league, it's not often we see player/coach commonalities - especially ones that span across multiple leagues. In 2011, Orlando Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris was a member of the Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) title winner Western New York Flash where her goalkeeper coach was none other than North Carolina Courage assistant Scott Vallow. Under Vallow, Harris went to not only lead her team to the championship but was named Goalkeeper of the Year after leading the league with just 1.00 goals allowed per game.

Pride forwards Alex Morgan and Marta were both also members of that WNY Flash team.


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National Women's Soccer League Stories from April 16, 2019


The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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