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Saturday night’s announced crowd at Snapdragon Stadium was 30,854 — a record season opener in the National Women’s Soccer League.

But the fans went home happy for a different result.

The host San Diego Wave beat the Chicago Red Stars 3-2 thanks to another dramatic goal by crowd favorite Alex Morgan.

Forward Morgan became one of just 20 players across the league to kick off the 2023 NWSL season that was on an active roster for the league’s inaugural season home openers in 2013.

Morgan secured the victory after converting a penalty kick in the 89th minute and scoring her first goal of the season. It marked her 58th career goal in NWSL.

The Red Stars took the lead in the 18th minute when midfielder Yuki Nagasato sent a close-ranged shot just wide of Wave FC goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan.

San Diego leveled in the 22nd minute via forward Amirah Ali, who scored her first of the regular season with the equalizer. Defender Christen Westphal struck a ball on frame that required a save from Chicago’s Naeher.

The ball fell to Ali, who headed the ball to the back of the net.

The Wave added a second goal in the 32nd minute off a corner kick. After a clearance in the box, forward Jaedyn Shaw intercepted the ball on the top of the box. The 18-year-old took a touch and placed a driven shot into the back of the net, logging her first goal of the season.

In stoppage time of the first half, Chicago was awarded a penalty kick that was converted by forward Mallory (Pugh) Swanson to equalize before the end of the half.

Wave goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan made a couple of saves in the second half after the Red Stars created several scoring opportunities. But the Wave would end up earning the three points with Morgan’s penalty kick.

After a back and forth second half, it was Morgan who converted a penalty kick in the 89th minute to secure the home opener. Red Stars defender Arin Wright was whistled for a handball in the box that the Wave captain then stepped up to send to the right of a diving Naeher.

New players Meggie Dougherty Howard and Danny Colaprico made their first appearances as Wave players. Colaprico signed with the Wave in the offseason after playing for the Red Stars.

After the game coach Casey Stoney said the players had some nerves in their first game of the season but “I’m immensely proud of the players.”

“We needed a little better possession; we were a little sloppy tonight,” the coach said. “Too many turnovers which invited them to have momentum.”

She conceded that the team did much better in the second half. “We created some really positive moments,” she said.

Stoney praised Shaw and Ali. Stoney said Ali has grown since she has joined the team — “like a new player for us.”

Casey also expressed appreciation for the “unbelievable” fan base.

The Wave remains at home Saturday, April 1, when the second-year club hosts the North Carolina Courage. The match begins at 7 p.m. — broadcast live on Paramount+.