NWSL: Barbra Banda scores twice as Pride beat Reign, tie record

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Barbra Banda scored twice as the Orlando Pride tied an NWSL record with their seventh consecutive victory, defeating the host Seattle Reign 3-2 on Sunday afternoon.

Emily Sams also tallied for Orlando (7-0-3, 24 points), which moved into first place in the league standings with its first win in nine tries in Seattle (1-5-3).

Angharad James-Turner and Bethany Balcer scored for Seattle (2-7-1, 7 points), which set the NWSL record of seven straight wins, since tied twice, in 2014.

Balcer received a second yellow card in the 83rd minute and was ejected, leaving the Reign with 10 players the rest of the way.

Banda scored the tiebreaking goal in the 58th minute off a corner kick by Marta. The cross deflected off a Seattle defender but fell to Banda at the top of the 6-yard box for a sidewinding half-volley just inside the left post.

Seattle rallied from a two-goal deficit, tying the score in the 48th minute on Balcer’s goal off a pass from Jess Fishlock.

The Pride took the lead in the ninth minute as Marta’s cross from the right wing was knocked away by a Seattle defender, but the ball fell to Sams for a 20-yard strike into the upper right corner of the net. It was Sams’ first NWSL goal.

Orlando made it 2-0 in the 18th minute as Adriana’s cross from the right wing found Banda unmarked in the middle of the 6-yard box for an easy header.

The Pride appeared to score again in the 32nd minute on a diving header by Kylie Strom after a free kick from about 40 yards out, but a video review determined Banda was offside on the play.

Seattle got a goal back in first-half stoppage time as Ji So-Yun made a nifty move past a defender at the top right of the penalty area and fed James-Turner for a 15-yard shot that deflected off an Orlando defender and into the upper right corner of the net.

–Field Level Media

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