Dave ClarkReign FC

Lightning-Fast Start Sees Reign FC Take Down Orlando

Dave ClarkReign FC
Lightning-Fast Start Sees Reign FC Take Down Orlando

Reign FC scored three goals in the opening 17 minutes of play before a two-hour weather delay beset Cheney Stadium due to lightning. Following the delay, the club saw out a 3-1 win against the Orlando Pride on Saturday night.

Reign FC struck before the lightning. Three minutes in, forward Bethany Balcer stole the ball and raced forward, laying a pass in to Darian Jenkins inside the penalty area. Jenkins blasted the ball past keeper Ashlyn Harris to score her second goal of the season.

Jenkins added a second goal nine minutes later. The forward raced on to a ball from defender Steph Catley and dribbled in along the goal line before smashing a low-angle shot off the crossbar and into the far side net.

Midfielder Bev Yanez added a goal in the 17th minute, after Balcer broke free on the right side and sent a low cross into the penalty area that rolled through the legs of Rosie White before Yanez converted to the right side of the net.

In the 23rd, a severe thunderstorm caused referee Karen Abt to delay the match. After a two-hour delay, play resumed after the storm passed.

Defender Lauren Barnes received a yellow card for a foul just outside the penalty area in the 61st minute. The caution was Barnes’ fifth of the season, meaning the defender will miss the club’s next match.

Orlando pulled a goal back in the 79th minute after drawing a penalty kick. Camila struck a shot low and to the left from the spot, beating Casey Murphy as the keeper dove the right way.

Jenkins earned player of the match honors for her first career brace. The forward converted her only two shots of the contest and drew one foul in 58 minutes of play, before making way for Ifeoma Onumonu.

The match also featured the 2019 Reign FC debut of forward Megan Rapinoe, who subbed on in the 72nd minute to a large ovation from the crowd.

The two clubs finished level on shots with 12 apiece, but Reign FC finished the match with 57.9 percent of the possession and a 6-4 advantage in shots on goal.­

Reign FC next travels to face the Washington Spirit on Saturday, September 14 at 4:30 p.m. PT.