Houston fans can rejoice as the Dash picked up three points in their season opener.
The Dash defeated the Washington Spirit 2-0, at BBVA Compass Stadium.
Both teams had a few chances in the first twenty minutes of the match yet neither managed to put them away. Less than twenty minutes into the match Spirit defender Ali Krieger was taken off in a stretch after a head to head collision with Jessica McDonald. Krieger was taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure and was evaluated for a possible concussion.
Carli Lloyd scored the first goal of the 2015 NWSL season, in the seventh minute of first half stoppage time. Lloyd launched a picturesque strike from 25 yards out off the crossbar and into the net. The goal marked number 17 of Lloyd's NWSL career and her sixth against the Spirit.
The impact of Houston's offseason additions could be felt throughout the match. Number one draft pick Morgan Brian looked confident on the ball making great passes and providing goal scoring opportunities for forwards Ohai, Jessica McDonald and Melissa Henderson in the Dash's 4-3-3 formation.
Kealia Ohai put the Dash ahead for good in the 50th minute. Ohai stripped Megan Oyster, beat a defender and placed a right-footed finish past a diving Harris. Up 2-0 the Dash were able to slow the game down and work on controlling possession.
The Spirit weren't able to gain much offensive momentum and were defended well by the Dash backline. Crystal Dunn gave Washington a spark when she entered the match in the 64th minute. Dunn provided Washington's best chance of the night in the 89th minute, 1v1 on goal but was unable to place her strike past Dash goalkeeper Bianca Henninger.
Ella Masar wore the armband and played right-back for the first time as a member of the Dash. Stephanie Ochs slid over into the center back position after spending much of last season at right back. Irish international Stephanie Roche made her first appearance for the Dash, coming on as a late substitute for Henderson.
The Dash are on the road next Saturday against Sky Blue FC.
Houston Dash vs. Washington Spirit
NWSL Regular Season
April 10, 2015 —BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston, TX
BHP Billiton Player of the Match: Carli Lloyd
Houston: Carli Lloyd (1) 45'
Houston: Kealia Ohai (1) 50'
Houston Dash: Bianca Henninger; Ella Masar, Nikki Cross, Stephanie Ochs, Megan Klingenberg; Rachel Axon (Ashely Nick, 88'), Carli Lloyd, Morgan Brian; Melissa Henderson (Stephanie Roche, 76'), Jessica McDonald (Tiffany McCarthy, 72'), Kealia Ohai
Washington Spirit: Ashlyn Harris; Whitney Church, Megan Oyster, Ali Krieger (Estelle Johnson, 24') , Katherine Reynolds; Lohman, Tori Huster, Christine Nairn; Amanda Da Costa (Crystal Dunn, 55'), Laura del Rio (Angela Salem, 64'), Estafania Banini