Although it was only the fourth game of the season, FC Kansas City was feeling the pressure to win.
The Blues entered Wednesday night’s game with a draw and two straight losses but scored quickly and held on for a 1-0 victory against the Chicago Red Stars in front of 1,679 fans at UMKC’s Durwood Stadium.
FC Kansas City improved to 1-2-1 while Chicago dropped to 1-2-0.
“It’s great to see that our hard work and our good play finally led us to a win,” Amy Rodriguez said.
“We had been wanting this win for a while because the first three games without a win is a little disheartening.”
Rodriguez, who was acquired through a trade with the Seattle Reign last season, scored FC Kansas City’s goal in the ninth minute on an assist from Jen Buczkowski.
It was the third goal of the year for Rodriguez, who missed the inaugural season of the National Women’s Soccer League last year to have a child.
“It came really early in the game, and I think I was a little bit surprised by it,” Rodriguez said.
“There was a little bit of a breakdown with the Chicago defense and I got a good cross and was able to just tap it in.”
Rodriguez and Erika Tymrak led FC Kansas City with three shots, and all of Rodriguez’s were on goal. As a team, the Blues had 14 shots, with eight on target, while holding Chicago to nine shots, with just three on goal.
Lauren Holiday and Merritt Mathias followed with two shots each. Nicole Barnhart, who was the 2013 NWSL Goalkeeper of the Year with a league-best 10 shutouts, recorded her first of the season with three saves.
“We showed that we will not be easy to break down this year,” FC Kansas City coach Vlatko Andonovski said.
“I am happy with the result. We showed a lot of character and showed that we can win 1-0.”
FC Kansas City will hit the road Saturday to take on the Houston Dash at 7 p.m.