Wednesday’s match is one of three remaining regular-season competitions for the 2019 season. Currently Royals FC sits in fourth place in the NWSL, but is tied with Reign FC at 31 points apiece and the same amount of remaining matches. Last Saturday’s 3-0 loss to the North Carolina provided the Courage the 2019 NWSL Shield and a guaranteed home match in the semifinals. This past weekend Portland Thorns FC and the Chicago Red Stars also clinched places in the postseason, the order of which they’ll finish is dependent on their remaining games. This leaves just one position remaining for the 2019 semifinals with URFC, Reign FC and the Washington Spirit all still mathematically in the running. A win over Reign FC would not clinch a playoff spot, but it would provide a tiebreaker should the two teams finish the season with the same amount of points. If the club is able to remain above the playoff line it will mark the first postseason appearance in franchise history and the third for Head Coach Laura Harvey.
Last time against Reign FC, Utah was victorious behind three goals from three different players. FW Katie Stengel opened scoring in the third minute when she collected a deflected shot. MF Lo’eau LaBonta netted the team’s second, single-handedly dribbling the ball up the offensive half of the field to chip the Reign FC goalkeeper. Finally, FW Amy Rodriguez pounced on a poorly collected shot from Reign goalkeeper Casey Murphy to finish off the match 3-1 in favor of Utah.
We Go Together
Utah Royals FC was scheduled to play its second straight road match and second in just nine days against Reign FC on Wednesday, September 18. The match was canceled just hours before the match was set to begin as a series of rainy days led to the baseball-field-turned-soccer-pitch unplayable. What was set to be a clash for sole possession of fourth place in the league standings was rescheduled for Wednesday, September 25, adding yet another road trip to the team’s difficult month. Following the match Utah Royals FC will head straight to Chicago to face the second-place Red Stars.
She’s the One That We Want
DF Becky Sauerbrunn leads the league with the highest passing accuracy percentage, bolstering an impressive completion rate on her passes of 89.08 percent. Fellow Royals FC centerback DF Rachel Corsie is close behind with the sixth-highest percentage, clocking in at 86.13 percent. Meanwhile, MF Desiree Scott has the seventh-highest at 85.71 percent. Overall the team ranks second with a passing accuracy rate of 77.32 percent, second only to the Washington Spirit who is just two points above at 78.96 percent.