Reign FC faced off against UCLA in its first preseason match of the season, at SilverLakes Soccer Complex in Norco, CA. This was the third consecutive year that Reign FC has played a preseason match against UCLA at SilverLakes.
The match ended in a 2-0 result for Reign FC. Darian Jenkins created both goals, with the former Bruin showing herself to be a versatile threat on the left side.
“This was a good first step for our club after two hard weeks of training,” Reign FC head coach Vlatko Andonovski said. “There are definitely things that we will want to refine, but UCLA is a very good team and I was pleased with how we handled having so many players join us late in camp or be unavailable today.”
The Reign didn’t have to wait long to find the back of the net. Three minutes in, Jenkins swung in a cross that ricocheted off a UCLA defender for an own goal. Jenkins notched a goal of her own in the 19th minute on a cross in from the right side from Jasmyne Spencer.
UCLA managed to twice test keeper Michelle Betos with promising opportunities, but the keeper turned away both efforts.
The match also served as an opportunity for several new faces to see the field for Reign FC. Celia Jimenez Delgado subbed on for Lauren Barnes in the first half, while Elise Kellond-Knight played the entire second half. Morgan Proffitt entered for Beverly Yanez in the 67th minute, while 18-year-old Reign Academy product and training camp invitee Sakura Yoshida played the final 15 minutes.
The Reign return home for a week of training before traveling to Portland for the Thorns Spring Invitational on Saturday, March 23. Reign FC will play friendlies against the U.S. U-23 Women’s National Team on Sunday, March 24, the Chicago Red Stars on Wednesday, March 27, and will face Portland Thorns FC on Saturday, March 30.
Reign FC’s final preseason match will be against the University of Washington Friday, April 5 at Husky Soccer Stadium in Seattle, before they open the 2019 NWSL season on the road against the Houston Dash on Sunday, April 14.