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Austin FC's supporters' section was full of representation, from USA flags to Pride merch to Austin FC apparel. (Claire Partain/Austonia)

Three days before Austin FC's first match, Q2 Stadium swapped its Verde for red, white and blue as over 20,000 fans cheered on the U.S. women's national team to a 2-0 victory on Wednesday.

The well-revered world champions were met with fans from near and far; Austin FC gear mixed with Team USA in the supporters' section as the United States flag flew overhead alongside Pride flags.



The match began with a bang as Austin FC supporters unveiled a gigantic "tifo," or banner, displaying No. 19 Crystal Dunn with the slogan "Christened by Queens."


USWNT players were the first to ever hit the Q2 Stadium pitch on Wednesday, and they more than lived up to expectations. The aptly-named Christen Press "christened" the field with the stadium's first-ever goal as she curved a shot into the bottom right corner at the end of the first half.

She was assisted by Carli Lloyd, who left the field to a roar of applause as she was subbed out in the beginning of the second half; Lloyd had just reached the ranks of only three other international players as she made her 300th international appearance at Q2 Stadium.

Nigeria fought back, but the USWNT ultimately shut down their window of opportunity as Lynn Williams pushed past the goalie to end the match 2-0.



With each save, shot and score, Austin's first professional soccer stadium filled with a collective roar. While every corner of the stadium joined in to chant a deafening "U-S-A" cry, the root of each chant could be traced back to the supporters' section, where La Murga de Austin used their signature bass drums to rile up the crowd. Led by Los Verdes' Imani Williams, who started chants from an elevated conductor's stand, hundreds of supporters combined Austin FC and USWNT traditions to cry out "Dale, Dale, Dale USA" in the brand-new stadium.

All 20,500 seats were taken at Q2 Stadium as the USWNT played. (Claire Partain/Austonia)

For Austinites who have been following Austin FC since its founding in 2017, watching Q2 Stadium fill up for USWNT is better than they could've even hoped.

Vanessa Santo-Avitia is a longtime soccer fan—her family follows Chivas in Mexico—while her wife, Sandra, is a born and raised Austinite. Because Vanessa works across the street at the Domain, they've watched as Q2 Stadium was built from the ground up. Vanessa said she's happy to support any team in Austin, especially one that unites the city like both the USWNT and Austin FC seem to do.

"This is like a one-time chance we're going to get to see this roster of amazing women get out there and play," Vanessa Santo-Avitia said. We're just so fortunate that there's a new stadium in our city."

Vanessa and Sandra Santo-Avitia are longtime Austinites and soccer fans eager to watch the sport take off in their city. (Claire Partain/Austonia)


For Frank and Johnny Espinoza, Austin FC's first home game on June 19 is almost as important as their friend's wedding. "We've been going back and forth on it," Espinoza joked.


Frank and Johnny Espinoza joined in the festivities at the front of the supporters' section at Q2 Stadium. (Claire Partain/Austonia)


The two brothers, both living in San Antonio, were the life of the party down at the first row of the supporter's section. Johnny, who had just downed an entire beer from a shoe to collective "oohs" and "ahhs" from the crowd, held a U.S. flag in one hand and a Sharpie in the other as he claimed he was looking to get an autograph that night.

Five minutes later, as the USWNT scored their final goal, Espinoza, unfortunately, stayed true to his word and stormed the field, flag in hand. He was immediately tackled and escorted off the field. He never got that autograph.

While some fans may have gotten carried away in their excitement, both supporters and players were all in on the stadium's collective frenzy. The USWNT may be setting their sights on the upcoming 2021 Olympic Games, but USWNT player Becky Sauerbrunn said the team still recognized the importance of the moment as they made history at Q2 Stadium.

"It was electric," Sauerbrunn said. "It's been a long time since I haven't been able to hear the people that are yelling five yards away... we'd love to come back here anytime."

Eventually, the frenzy was over as thousands of fans filed out of Q2 Stadium for the first time. The lights were dimmed and USWNT players left with promises to revisit.

Austin FC may be playing their own first match at the stadium in three days, but the USWNT is forever in Q2's history books as they proudly brought the stadium's fans to their feet.

Until next time, Team USA!

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