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Angel City FC holds off Kansas City to record first home win of the season

Soccer fans hold up a poster during the second half of an NWSL soccer match between the Angel City FC and the Kansas City Current at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Claire Emslie kicks the ball during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC forward Alyssa Thompson, center, attacks the goal defended by Kansas City Current defender Robinson Gabrielle during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

An Angel City FC fan celebrates during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Savannah McCaskill, left, kicks the ball against the Kansas City Current during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC forward Scarlett Camberos dribbles the ball against the Kansas City Current during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Savannah McCaskill, right, kicks the ball against the Kansas City Current during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC starting players pose for a portrait during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC forward Katie Johnson controls the ball against the Kansas City Current defender during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Savannah McCaskill headers the ball against the Kansas City Current during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC goalkeeper Didi Haracic kicks the ball against the Kansas City Current during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC head coach Freya Coombe looks on during the second half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC forward Alyssa Thompson chases the ball during the second half of an NWSL soccer match against the Kansas City Current at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. The Angel City FC won 3-2. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC defender Megan Reid, right, kicks the ball defended by Kansas City Current forward Kizer Cece during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Dani Weatherholt, right, kicks the ball against the Kansas City Current during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Claire Emslie pretends to communicate with someone using her shinguard after she scores a goal against the Kansas City Current during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC teammates huddle around forward Alyssa Thompson after Thompson scores a goal against the Kansas City Current during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC goalkeeper Didi Haracic makes a save against the Kansas City Current during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Claire Emslie (10) celebrates with teammate forward Alyssa Thompson after Emslie scores a goal against the Kansas City Current during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC midfielder Claire Emslie, left, kicks the ball against the Kansas City Current during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC defender Madison Hammond, right, kicks the ball defended by Kansas City Current forward Kizer Cece during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

Angel City FC defender Megan Reid, center, vies for the ball against Kansas City Current defender Ball Elizabeth, left, during the first half of an NWSL soccer match at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Sunday, May 7, 2023. (Photo by Raul Romero Jr., Contributing Photographer)

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LOS ANGELES — There is no such thing as a comfortable lead in the NWSL and certainly not for Angel City Football Club and Sunday was another reminder.

With a three-goal lead at halftime against the Kansas City Current, things got interesting quickly in the second half as the Current responded with two goals.

The good news for Angel City (2-2-2, eight points) is that the Current never scored a third goal, allowing ACFC to record the 3-2 win in front of 19,219 at BMO Stadium.

“I thought our game management was good,” ACFC goalkeeper DiDi Haračić said. “In the locker room at halftime, we did say we can’t take the foot off the gas. Unfortunately, we did. I’ll take full credit on the second goal (CeCe Kizer), I’m capable of doing better, but to be able to close out the game and get the win at home, that’s really important, especially moving on to next week.”

Haračić had four saves in the first half and finished with six in the game.

The win was the first at home this season for Angel City and this was the second consecutive game that the team scored three goals. Last Saturday, Angel City finished with a 3-3 draw against the Portland Thorns. Angel City scored three goals in a game only once last season.

This time, the three goals came in 15-minute stretch late in the first half that combined precision passing with lethal finishing.

In the 31st minute, Alyssa Thompson scored for the second consecutive week, beating her defender in a 1-on-1, cutting back and shooting and tucking the ball inside the far post.

Claire Emslie finished a Jun Endo cross with a sliding tap-in in the 43rd minute and early in added time, Madison Hammond set up Endo for the goal and a 3-0 lead before halftime.

“I think we really made it a point today to be on the front foot and to be aggressive,” ACFC defender and captain Ali Riley said. “We knew that if we stood off them, they have a lot of pace up front, they like finding those balls in behind, we would have to be proactive.

“I think in that (15-minute) period, we took that to the next step of actually combining, finding players in the half space, we’ve been working on our crosses, working on getting people in the box and finishing our chances and I think you saw the quality of the delivery and what players like Claire (Emslie) are willing to do to get their body on the line to put that ball in the back of the net.”

The Current (2-4) came out in the second half with a purpose. Izzy Rodriguez scored in the 57th minute and then Kizer’s goal came just four minutes later.

That left Angel City with approximately 30 minutes to protect a one-goal lead. Last season, the club had trouble doing that and again last week allowing a game-tying goal to Portland’s goalkeeper Bella Bixby deep into added time.

“I think the vibe and overall energy in the locker room before the game was different,” Haračić said. “I think we know that we need to do better the last few games. This is our home and we need to protect this. We had about 24-48 hours to sit on (the) Portland (loss). Sports, it’s a short-term memory, we have to have it. We learned from Portland and tonight, to close it out like that, I think it is really important.”

Angel City returns to action Saturday at home against the Washington Spirit.

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