Lauren Holiday wasted little time in Friday making her return to the pitch and to the scorebook for FC Kansas City.
After missing her team’s previous match while recovering from food poisoning, Holiday not only started but provided an early assist on a goal by Sarah Hagen in the Blues’ 1-1 draw with the Western New York Flash at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, N.Y.
“We are excited to have her back,” Blues coach Vlatko Andonovski said. “she is a big piece of the puzzle and makes things happen for us. It’s obvious that with her on the field we do well.”
Holiday, who also plays for the U.S. national team, started the Blues’ attack with a shot in the sixth minute, but it floated just over the crossbar. The two teams exchanged shots for the first 10 minutes until Hagen’s goal.
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In the 17th minute, Holiday found Hagen streaking down the right side for an arching goal to give the Blues the lead. It was Hagen’s third goal in three games since joining FC Kansas City and pushed Holiday into the team lead with five assists on the season.
It did not take the Flash long to equalize as Samantha Kerr headed a ball to Carli Lloyd, who headed the equalizer past Nicole Barnhart in the 22nd minute.
Although the Blues finished with a 20-to-nine shot differential, including 15 in the second half, they could not capitalize for the victory and instead left with their fourth draw of the season.
It was the 10th result in the last 11 games for the Blues who bounced back from a 7-1 loss to Portland Thorns FC, which ended a seven-game win streak. With four games remaining, FC Kansas City is ranked second in the National Women’s Soccer League with a 10-5-4 record.
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