Gotham FC fall 0-1 to San Diego Wave on Pride Night
With a record breaking 15,058 in attendance, Gotham FC lost to the visiting San Diego Wavewith a goal from Makenzy Doniak in the 46th minute on Sunday, June 4th.
After two weeks atop the National Women’s Soccer League table, NJ/NY Gotham FC now sits in fourth place following the 0-1 loss to San Diego Wave FC. Although Gotham dominated possession (61%) and controlled much of the play, the team would come away with their third loss of the season.
The first half would end scoreless with Gotham dictating much of the play. Alex Morgan of the Wave would have an early chance in the 3rd minute, but Gotham dominated the half with four shots to the Wave’s singular shot. Despite controlling the first half, Gotham was unable to convert their chances, and in the second half, the Wave would quickly find the go-ahead goal with a shot from Makenzy Doniak in the 46th minute.
Gotham would have significant chances to equalize in the second half. Demonstrating the team’s attacking mentality, Gotham registered 15 shots on the night with three on target and earned eight corners. With seven minutes of added time, Gotham pushed to the very end to find the equalizer, but the Wave was able to mitigate Gotham’s chances and hold their one goal lead until the final whistle.
Gotham goalkeeper Abby Smith had a standout performance with three saves. In the 72nd minute, a block from Bruninha and follow-up save from Smith kept Gotham from going down by two goals.
Despite the loss, Gotham remains optimistic and as a club they are determined to keep moving forward.
“We’re trying to create something special, something different, and people want to watch it live,” said Head Coach Juan Carlos Amorós. “I’ve said it before that we don’t get too high when we win or too low when we lose. It’s a process and a team building who we are, and everyone can see that. But I think we are on the right path for sure.”
Playing for Pride
Since at least 2015, Gotham FC has hosted annual Pride Night celebrations. For the players, these nights are important to show not only the fans but the players on the team that everyone is welcome.
“It’s incredible, it’s such a testament to the girls who have come before us. If you look at the WPS and the leagues before this, they fight for things like this and now this is a normal thing for us,” said goalkeeper Michelle Betos after the match.
“Our team is made up of so many different people, so many different ethnicities, races, sexual orientations, everything, and we just have so much pride in that, and pride in who we represent,” Betos continued. “Coming from New York/New Jersey, that means a lot to me. I grew up not thinking there was anything wrong with anyone. I knew every kind of person, and when I came out, my mom said, ‘I figured!’ I’m really proud of where we’re at, at this point. Hopefully, we can continue going forward.”
As a special token for the evening, Gotham FC Creative Director Ashlyn Harris, who designed the team’s Pride Collection this year, created a special captain’s armband for her wife and team captain Ali Krieger to wear. The armband featured the club’s Pride Collection design and the couple’s wedding date.
“That was a little surprise for me, which I thought was really special,” Kreiger said. “It ‘s an incredible celebration [to host Pride Night in front of 15,000 fans]. Tonight is all about inclusivity and really creating a safe space. People want to feel like they belong and like they have a community of people who are personally just as passionate about soccer, life, and just living their truth and their authentic life.”
Next up: Gotham FC will take on the Orlando Pride on Wednesday, June 7th at home as part of the Challenge Cup. For more information, visit GothamFC.com.