Wave ForeCast: Wave FC vs. Washington
With the international break in the rear view mirror, San Diego Wave FC is poised to return to the field and the win column in a holiday weekend matinee against the Washington Spirit at 2pm PDT from Torero Stadium on Paramount+. San Diego checks in with a 5-2-3 record (18 Pts.), one point behind the Chicago Red Stars for the top spot in the NWSL table. Washington meanwhile, the defending NWSL champions have struggled so far in the 2022 campaign, having won just one match on the season, the Spirit is 1-3-6 (9 Pts.) and is in eighth place in the table.
THE DROP-IN (Last Match): Looking to finish the month of June on a high note, San Diego ventured to Harrison, New Jersey on June 19th to face NJ/NY Gotham FC to conclude the regular-season series between the coast-to-coast clubs. Alex Morgan continued her torrid scoring run as the Diamond Bar native scored her 10th goal of the season in the 18th minute before coming back and scoring her 2nd of the match (11th overall) in the 43rd minute which gave San Diego a 2-0 lead at Halftime. In the two matches against Gotham FC this season, Morgan scored six goals in two matches and set a new career-high in goals this season. Makenzy Doniak finished off the scoring with her first goal of the season in the 68th minute for San Diego who rolled past Gotham FC 3-0 at Red Bull Arena to sweep the regular-season series.
PORTS OF CALL (International Duty): Six members of Wave FC were called out to fulfill International Duty obligations with their respective National Teams. Alex Morgan, Taylor Korneick, and Naomi Girma join the U.S. Women’s Team. Korneick’s debut could not have gone any better, on top of her National Team debut, Kornieck headed home a 90th-minute Goal which pushed Team USA’s lead to 3-0 over Colombia in Denver, Colorado. Morgan, Kornieck, and Girma are now in Monterrey, Mexico with Team USA to compete in the 2022 CONCACAF Women’s Championship from July 4-18. Kailen Sheridan (Canada), Emily van Egmond (Australia), and Sofia Jakobsson (Sweden) were the other three members away on International Duty for San Diego.
SWELL FACES (Roster Moves): Due to the roster shakeup with international duty, San Diego has signed three players to contracts to fill voids. The Wave welcomes Jackie Altschuld, Sydney Cummings, and Sarah Sodoma. Altschuld is no stranger to San Diego, let alone Wave FC’s current home stadium as she is a graduate of the University of San Diego and has spent time playing professionally over in Iceland. Cummings comes to town by way of Racing Louisville FC where she was the 42nd overall pick of the 2022 NWSL draft after playing collegiately at Brown University and Georgetown. Sodoma is coming off a college career that saw her win the Sun Belt Conference’s Player and Offensive Player of the year plus leaving Arkansas State as its leading scorer in program history.
FIRST AID (Injury Report): There is a possibility that San Diego will have the services of one of their team captains and Defender Abby Dahlkemper on Sunday. Dahlkemper, who became the first player signed in club history following the announcement of the franchise’s formation, has faced her share of adversity this season having missed time with a Concussion, COVID, and Fractured Ribs.
2022 SAN DIEGO WAVE FC ROSTER:
Goalkeepers (3): Kailen Sheridan, Carly Telford, Melissa Lowder
Defenders (9): Abby Dahlkemper, Naomi Gima, Kaleigh Reihl, Tegan McGrady, Christen Westphal, Kayla Bruster, Mia Gyau, Taylor Hansen, Sydney Cummings (NTR)
Forwards (7): Amirah Ali, Jodie Taylor, Sofia Jakobsson, Alex Morgan, Makenzy Doniak, Katie Johnson, Sarah Sodoma (NTR)
Midfielders (8): Emily van Egmond, Kelsey Turnbow, Kristen McNabb, Sydney Pulver, Taylor Kornieck, Belle Briede, Marleen Schimmer, Jackie Altschuld (NTR)
NTR = National Team Replacement
ABOUT THE OPPONENT: WASHINGTON SPIRIT: The defending NWSL Champion Washington Spirit come in for a Sunday afternoon visit. The Spirit has struggled so far out of the gates this season, they check in with a 1-3-6 record (9 Pts.) and currently sit in eighth place in the NWSL table. Washington is looking to find their offensive footing as of late having relied heavily on Ashley Hatch, Trinity Rodman, and Ashley Sanchez, all of whom have combined to score eight of Washington’s ten goals on the season. The Spirit is coming off of a 2-2 tie against Racing Louisville FC that saw Washington unable to contain a 2-0 lead after Rodman and Madison Elwell scored to give the Spirit the lead at the half before Nadia Nadim scored two goals in 22 minutes for Louisville in the second half to share points before the International Break.
SHORE BREAK (Goalkeeper Matchup): With Kailen Sheridan away for San Diego on international duty with Canada, the Wave will turn to either Carly Tedford or Melissa Lowder for Sunday’s match. Neither keeper has appeared in a match yet this season for the Wave. Aubery Kingsbury has started all ten matches for Washington with 32 saves made on the campaign.
WE SALUTE YOU: The Wave will honor the service of military members and their families along with members of the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) at Sunday’s match. Members of Wave FC’s front office spent time on Saturday morning visiting members of the Armed Forces at Camp Pendelton.
OFFSHORE VIEWING (Where to Watch): Sunday’s match will begin at 2pm PDT from Torero Stadium on the campus of the University of San Diego. The match is also SOLD OUT. The match will be broadcasted nationwide on Paramount+.
QUOTES (from the most recent match on 6/19, courtesy of the Wave Communications Team):
HEAD COACH CASEY STONEY:
On where she looks for the club to grow during the international break: “We want to continue creating chances across different areas. We know Alex [Morgan] is a big player for us, but we need to create chances from other areas and that’s something we’ll look at. Also, we’re missing quite a few players with the international break so building different partnerships and looking at the way we play with different players is going to be really important. Looking at how we bring in some training players that can come in and add to our squad during that period.”
What she’s learned about Alex Morgan: “I’ve learned that she is a very good leader in terms of what she’s done on the pitch. I think she goes about her leadership really quietly off the pitch in terms of the different things she does I don’t always know about, but supports those younger players. I’ve learned that when she’s happy and healthy she’s in a good spot and she performs well. I just want to keep her there. I want to keep her performing, I want to keep her happy, I want to keep her healthy and give her opportunities to perform and play because I know that increases her chances with the National Team. This is all credit to Alex. She’s come in and applied herself, she’s been open-minded, she’s really coachable, she gives what she needs to give to the team and encourages everybody else to do the same.”
On the team’s offensive strategy with Alex Morgan leaving for the international break: “Listen, that’s a big question and I’m not naive in thinking we’ve had loads of goal scorers because we haven’t. She’s been pivotal. When she goes away someone else has to step up. We’ll prepare the players and make sure we put people in positions to try and create chances for them. You never know, when someone isn’t there it allows someone else to shine, and hopefully, that’ll happen.”
On the 3-0 shutout win: “It was a really important three points for us. We’ve had a bit of a drought points wise and we know we’ve played the best but haven’t gotten the points. This is huge for us going into the international break and a shutout is even better for our back line. It proves all that hard work they’ve been doing is coming through in the end.”
The emotions and feelings about beating her old club: “It’s massive. My family is here. It’s great to be back in my old home. It feels like home and I miss the fans here and the people here, but I have a great thing in San Diego and they’ve supported me and been so incredible since the move. I’m just grateful for the people here and San Diego.”
On scoring her first career goal: “It feels really good to score. It feels like all of my hard work and the team’s hard work comes to fruition. I think this was a great game for us as a team to go into the [international] break with a win. On top of the table feels really good, so I’m just happy to contribute to our win today.”
On the club’s early success: “I think we all would agree that we have a long way to go in the season still, and while we may be on top right now, we have so many games and so many opportunities to keep growing as a team. I think we’ve shown that up to this point so we’re excited to keep pushing ourselves and have different players step up to the plate.”
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