Abby Wambach and Carli Lloyd returned to the Western New York lineup Sunday, but all the Flash could manage was a 1-1 tie with the winless Seattle Reign in their National Women’s Soccer League match at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester.
WNY (5-2-4) extended its unbeaten streak to seven games (4-0-3) but still there was disappointment because the Flash played the final 34 minutes of regulation plus four minutes of stoppage time with an advantage after Kiersten Dallstream of the Reign received a red card in the 57th minute. Her foul against Wambach in the penalty area resulted in her second yellow card of the game. Wambach converted the penalty kick to tie the match at 1-1.
Keelin Winters had given Seattle (0-9-2) a 1-0 lead in the 28th minute.
The Flash outshot Seattle, 18-14, but goalkeeper Hope Solo, of U.S. National team fame, made eight saves for the Reign. Seattle’s roster was strengthened this week with the return of Solo from the national team as well as the addition of another U.S. team player, Megan Rapinoe.
WNY trails the first place Sky Blue FC and Portland Thorns by seven points (8-2-2 each) with a game in hand on both. Next game for the Flash will be at 7:05 p.m. Friday against the Washington Spirit at Sahlen’s Stadium. It will be College Student Night with special ticket pricing for students with a valid ID card.
Wambach was honored before Sunday’s game for becoming the all-time women’s goal scorer in international play.
“It was a great occasion for football and a great crowd turned out to help honor Abby,” said Flash coach Aaran Lines. “It was a fantastic game of end-to-end football with lots of chances. We were down one-nil. To come back to 1-1 is very encouraging because it was our third game in nine days. Could we have been fresher? Yes. Would it have helped? Yes.”