Chicago Midfielder Danielle Colaprico Nets Game Winning Goal in 54th Minute
A resilient Sky Blue FC (1-2-1, 4 points) side put forth a great effort on Saturday night, playing in a road match opposite the Chicago Red Stars (2-0-1, 7 points) at the Village of Lisle-Benedictine University Sports Complex. Chicago midfielder Danielle Colaprico provided the lone tally in this pairing, registering her first professional goal in the 54th minute of an eventual 1-0 victory.
“I am really disappointed for our team because we did a very much better job of limiting chances for Chicago to score,” said Jim Gabarra, Sky Blue FC Technical Director & Head Coach. “We really just had the one lapse there off the corner where we didn’t clear the ball away and they scored their goal. Otherwise, we are improving as a team, and I am proud of the performance that our players put forth.”
With the Red Stars having a bye during the first week of the season, they entered Saturday’s match with their full roster, which included eight players who will now be heading to Canada to join their respective nations in preparation for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. On the contrary, Sky Blue FC was playing without any of its World Cup participants, but the New Jersey side did not allow that to diminish its collective effort at all.
The Sky Blue FC defense was forced to step up early in this contest as Chicago aggressively attacked on the offensive end. Despite some dangerous opportunities for the Red Stars, the back line of the road club was collapsing appropriately to force some tough shots.
Sky Blue FC gained its first truly good look in the 26th minute when Danish striker Nadia Nadim picked off an ill-advised pass and dropped it at the feet of midfielder Katy Freels. The Auburn graduate then turned upfield and knifed her way through the Chicago midfield before setting up a one-two with forward Maya Hayes. After Hayes touched the ball back to her in space, Freels hammered a shot from distance that was just high of the crossbar.
The deadlock in this match was finally broken in the 54th minute. Following a Red Stars corner kick that found the head of midfielder Shannon Boxx, a dangerous deflection landed at the feet of Colaprico, who fired a shot in the direction of the frame. Her initial attempt was blocked but landed right back at her feet, and she would make the second strike count. As the ball approached, Colaprico stepped into it and hammered a shot that went untouched into the upper left netting, giving her side a 1-0 advantage off what was her first professional goal.
This game was nearly returned to level terms in the 87th minute on a free kick opportunity from the right flank, but the chance would come up just short. On the play, Shawna Gordon sent the ball to the far side of the penalty area, where first-year defender Kristin Grubka hit a diving header to the near post that forced Chicago netminder Karina LeBlanc to make a diving save. The Canadian goalkeeper was just able to get her fingertips on the shot, and the Red Stars defense was able to quickly clear the loose ball from danger.
Sky Blue FC continued to turn up the tempo over the closing minutes to find the equalizer but would unable to find it. When the final whistle had been blown, Chicago found itself with a 1-0 victory.
Sky Blue FC will now return to Yurcak Field on Saturday, May 9th, hosting Seattle Reign FC at 7:00 PM EST. Individual game tickets are on sale now. Make sure you catch all of the world class NWSL action this season at Yurcak Field by calling 888-SBFC-TIX (888-723-2849)!
Sky Blue FC vs. Chicago Red Stars
May 2, 2015 – Village of Lisle-Benedictine University Sports Complex
Sky Blue FC: 0-0-0
CRS 54 D.Colaprico
SBFC – B.Cameron, C.Levin (L.LaBonta-81), K.Grubka, H.Haagsma, L.Cutshall, K.Freels, S.Killion, S.Gordon, T.Lytle (M. Morris-61), N.Nadim, M.Hayes (K.DeCesare-71)
Substitutes Not Used: A.Bledsoe, T.Diederich
CRS: K.LeBlanc, J.Johnston, T.Hemmings, S.Johnson, D.Colaprico (A.Erceg-90), S.Boxx, V.DiBernardo, L.Chalupny, S.Huerta (A.Gilliland-63), C.Press, J.Hoy (C.Walls-65)
Substitutes: A.Mautz, R.Quon, M.Lomnicki, M.Dalton
85 SBFC Yellow N.Nadim