Match Preview: Kansas City Current face the Chicago Red Stars Sunday, April 24 for chance to advance to Challenge Cup Semifinals Kansas City Current

Match Preview: Kansas City Current face the Chicago Red Stars Sunday, April 24 for chance to advance to Challenge Cup Semifinals

KANSAS CITY (April 23, 2022) — The Kansas City Current closes out the round robin stage of the 2022 NWSL Challenge Cup at home against the Chicago Red Stars on Sunday, April 24 at 4 p.m. CT at Children’s Mercy Park.

Following last week’s 2-1 victory over the Houston Dash, the Current sit atop the Central Division with 10 points (3-1-1). The Current took an early lead with a goal from Kristen Hamilton in the fourth minute, her third of the tournament. Liberty, Missouri native Shea Groom tied the game for Houston in the 59th minute, but midfielder Victoria Pickett scored the game-winner for Kansas City in the 80th minute.

The Red Stars are second in the division with 8 points (2-1-2). Last week against Racing Louisville, Chicago also jumped out to an early lead when Amanda Kowalski found the back of the net in the sixth minute. Louisville’s Emina Ekic scored the equalizer in the 75th minute. Neither team found any chances after that as the game ended in a 1-1 draw.

Tickets for Sunday’s match are still available at HERE.

Although there are many scenarios that would see Kansas City advance to the NWSL Challenge Cup Semifinals, the easiest route to the playoffs is with a win or draw on Sunday. Either result would allow the Current to win the Central Division.

Two other important matches to watch occur on Saturday. Should Washington defeat North Carolina and OL Reign defeat San Diego, a Kansas City win on Sunday would result in the Current hosting the semifinal match on May 4.

Defender Hailie Mace stole the show against Chicago on March 25 when the Current visited Seatgeek Stadium. Chicago’s Vanessa DiBernardo took a long shot on goal that ricocheted off a Kansas City defender into the goal in the 22nd minute, putting them ahead 1-0 at the halftime break. Mace came out strong in the second half, tying the game with a goal to the far post in the 58th minute. In the 86th minute she chipped the ball over the Red Stars defense to a wide-open Kristen Hamilton for the winning goal.

Kansas City Current: Defender Alex Loera –
Loera is one of three players, and the only rookie, to start every match for Kansas City. Originally picked in the 2021 NWSL Draft, Loera returned to Santa Clara to help the Broncos win a NCAA Championship before joining Kansas City. Her calm demeanor and strong defense have been important to the young Current backline as the team has climbed the Central Division ladder.

Chicago Red Stars: Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher – Naeher returned to the field after missing much of the 2021 season with an injury suffered with the U.S. Women’s National Team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. She has only conceded four goals in the tournament so far, two of them to Kansas City on March 25.



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