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Laura Harvey: “We still have a possibility of getting into the playoffs.”

Quotes from defender Lauren Barnes & coach Harvey after Friday’s practice.

Seattle Reign FC host the Washington Spirit this Sunday, completing their back-to-back with them. The results from the road trip have put the team’s chance at the playoffs on the tiniest of threads, but there is still a thread. Simply put, Reign have to win Sunday and their regular season finale at Houston and hope either Western New York Flash or Chicago Red Stars lose their final two.

At today’s practice, defender Lauren Barnes talked with me about Sunday’s match.

On extra pressure to not only win out but hope another team or two loses out:

Lauren Barnes: “I wouldn’t say added pressure, we want to go into every game winning it anyways. It’s been like that for a while for us, so I think to continue to just focus on each game as it comes is our biggest focus right now.”

What they need to do to get the win over Washington:

“We need to score more goals than they do.” (chuckles)

On where her free kick goal at Chicago ranks among goals she’s scored:

“In this league, very high because I’ve only scored one other. I was really excited about it. Whenever I have an opportunity to be able to do that and help the team, it’s a great feeling.”

On switching between left back and center back over the course of this season and if there were any difficulties in making adjustments:

“I initially was a left back so going between those two positions has been quite easy for me and at the end of the day I just want to be able to provide whatever I can for the team whenever they need it.”

On any message to the fans coming to Sunday’s match:

“We need all the support we can get. Twelfth man has always been huge for us, it’s why we love home field advantage and their support has been great this whole season and hope to see them out there again.”

After chatting with Barnes, head coach Laura Harvey talked to reporters after training.

On extra pressure to not only win out but hope another team or two loses out:

Laura Harvey: “We’ve known that now for two games. Our mindset since the Portland game that we had to win out. The fact that we drew against Chicago meant we had a fighting chance and losing against Washington we thought that would probably be it but then mathematically we’re still in it. As long as we’re mathematically still in it, we’re gonna fight to the end to try and make sure we keep that possibility alive.”

On any expectation for Sunday’s atmosphere with playoffs on the line:

I think Memorial (Stadium) is always a special place for us and our last game here was a phenomenal crowd and the atmosphere was great. I don’t expect it to be any different. I think the fans want the same thing we want which is to try and get in the playoffs.”

On any special pre-match ceremonies in observance of 15th anniversary of 9/11:

“I am not aware of everything that we’re doing. I am focused on the team. That would be a question for our front office.”

On defender Rachel Corsie’s rehab progress (she is officially ruled out per league injury report):

“Today was the first time she touched the field. She is probably a few weeks away from getting anywhere near a match, I would think.”

On the aftermath from Wednesday’s events with the national anthem:

“I’m just focused on the game. Obviously on Wednesday I didn’t know really what had happened around the anthem until after the game. And again, my job is to get the team as prepared as possible for Sunday. All the other questions around the ceremony and what’s happening, I’m not aware of exactly what’s going to be happening at all.

On if it has been a distraction:

“It’s not been a distraction to the team because we’re very insular. We’re trying to make sure that we can stay focused on what’s important to us, which is as a team it’s to try and make sure we put the best product on the field on Sunday and get the result we want. That was the same in D.C., and in Chicago, and will continue to be the same. I think it has to be. I think that’s our job is to make sure we’re fully prepared and ready to go for Sunday.”

Seattle Reign FC host Washington Spirit at Memorial Stadium on Sunday with a 7 PM kickoff. As a reminder to anyone attending the game, the Seattle Seahawks have their season opener at 1 PM and Seattle Storm have a game at 4 PM so plan accordingly with respect to increased traffic around the city.

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