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Alyssa Thompson’s viral reaction introduces NWSL fans to HotShot

Angel City FC star Alyssa Thompson is checked out by a trainer during Sunday's match against the Houston Dash. (Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

Alyssa Thompson’s face contorted in disgust during Angel City FC’s 0-0 draw Sunday with the Houston Dash. The culprit? HotShot, the spicy cramp prevention concoction wreaking havoc on NWSL taste buds.

The 18-year-old rookie was stretching out her right leg with help from an Angel City trainer late in the match. The trainer handed her a HotShot, which Thompson drank and then immediately regretted.

Billed as “muscle cramp supplement,” HotShot’s ingredients includes sugar and lime juice concentrate but also ginger extract, pepper abstract, sea salt and cassia oil. How does it work? The spicy shot of liquid stimulates the nerves in the athlete’s mouth, which then tricks the nerves in the rest of the body (including those causing the cramps) into stopping their signals.

Kansas City Current rookie Michelle Cooper, who tweeted the video of Thompson’s reaction, received her own unpleasant introduction to HotShot in her team’s 2-1 win Saturday against the Orlando Pride.

“I was just texting Alyssa before the game telling her how shocking that HotShot was. NOW SHE KNOWS!!” Cooper tweeted Sunday.

Thompson confirmed the text exchange between the rookies, though it did not prepare her.

“I texted her and I was like, ‘Oh, I’ve never had one of those, thank god. I won’t have one,’” Thompson told Equalizer’s Taylor Vincent after the match. “And then I just cramped up and my trainer was like, ‘You want it?’ And I was like, ‘No.’ And (then they told me), ‘You need to have it.’ So then I had it and it was really gross and I did not like it at all.”

Cooper agreed with Thompson’s assessment, tweeting of her own HotShot: “I don’t know if you guys have ever had one of those….but NEVER again.”