What’s left? A look at the end of Reign FC’s NWSL Regular Season
By Eric Flatness
In Seattle, two seasons equals two playoff appearances. Last year, Seattle Reign FC took the NWSL by storm on the back of the #HasLauraHarveyMadeaTradeYet hashtag, converting it into a regular season title and an appearance in the NWSL Final.
Reign FC has four matches left, the next against the Houston Dash (is anyone else getting a strong déjà vu vibe?) Winning any two of them would grant them home field advantage throughout the playoffs and solidify another regular season title.
While it was recently announced that the NWSL Final would be played in Portland no matter who clutches the NWSL Shield at the end of the season, Reign FC still has the opportunity to host a playoff match on the Moda Pitch of Memorial Stadium.
Reign FC has earned 25 points from a possible 27 this season. It’s an avoidance of losing that goes all the way back to the 2014 season, as Reign FC has yet to drop all three points within Seattle city limits through 21 matches.
After a road trip to Houston (presumably to bring back the humidity and thunderstorms they left in the Seattle area Wednesday,) Reign FC will return to its secret lair below the Space Needle, and prepare for a third rendezvous with the Boston Breakers. Four days later, the team will host Sky Blue FC before ending the regular season in the Nation’s capital with a matchup against the Washington Spirit.
No one in the locker room will be counting any eggs before they’ve hatched, however, but outside speculation on this team’s ceiling is free to run rampant. This is a team which just returned Hope Solo to action after three months away, and continued on without missing a beat.
Going into the final matches, Reign FC have scored the most goals at 32 and are tied for fewest conceded at 18. On top of that, the final two matches to be played at home are against the eigth and ninth place teams in the league. While its worth noting, Reign FC will enter each of its last matches with one thing in mind: Getting to that final match.
The success on the pitch has begun to overflow into the stands, where the crowd around the Moda Pitch have now surpassed 6,000 for the second straight game. The tide has risen, and with the postseason approaching the high water mark may not yet be set.
If the playoffs began today, Reign FC would begin the first round the same way they did last year: a one-off semifinal match with the Spirit. Chicago and Kansas City would play their own way to the final. The Dash and Portland Thorns are still alive for their own postseason glory, but have an uphill battle towards that fourth and final playoff spot.
But before all that happens, those final regular season matches need to be played. Fans looking to attend one of Reign FC’s remaining matches can visit ReignFC.com today.
The next home match against the Boston Breakers on Wednesday, August 26 is officially ‘ReignStorm’ Night presented by Ruffneck Scarves. As such, the first 4,000 fans through the gates will receive an awesome, one-of-a-kind scarf featuring Reign FC and the Seattle Storm!