Columbus Eagles FC led twice in Sunday’s home opener, but Cincinnati Sirens FC stormed back to win 3-2 and move to the top of the WPSL’s Ohio Valley division.
The Eagles fall to 1-0-1 (3 points) and sit in fourth place in the division. Cincinnati (1-1-0, 4 points) climbs to a joint-top position, tied on points with Cleveland Ambassadors. The loss is Columbus’s first to Cincinnati in the WPSL since 2016. It’s also just the second home loss for the Eagles since 2017.
Columbus got off to a fast start in the first half, peppering Maddie Jewell’s net throughout the majority of the first half. In the 36th minute, Cameron Shedenhelm – in her first match with the Eagles – scored to give Columbus the lead.
The Sirens tied the match on an Annie Demuth free kick with the last kick of the first half, and the teams went into the break tied at 1 apiece.
In the second half, the Eagles came out firing again, capitalizing on a mistake by the Cincinnati backline to take the lead 2-1. Natalie Horner pounced on the mistake to score her first goal as an Eagle.
Just a few minutes later, Cincinnati’s Macy Hamblin leveled the score at 2, and then Abigail Zoeller scored the match’s winning goal in the 86th minute to give the Sirens all three points.
The Eagles had more shots (9) and shots on target (6) than Cincinnati in the match, but Jewell made save after save to keep Columbus at bay. Ashley Gogolin, Kelly DeNiro, and Micaela Powers all had great chances saved by Jewell, and Brooklyn Pritt hit the post midway through the first half. Cincinnati converted all their shots on target into goals, and that proved to be the difference.
Andrea Vera got the start in net for Columbus in place of Hannah Sargent, who was unavailable for the match.
The Eagles take the field again Saturday in Dayton, Ohio, against Dayton Dutch Lions. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. and fans can watch the match live on the MyCujoo app and here on the club’s website.