Photo by Robyn McNeil.
Sky Blue FC Scores Early, Breakers Equalize in Second Half
Sky Blue FC (1-3-3, 6 points) was able to gain an early advantage over the Boston Breakers (2-3-1, 7 points) on Friday night, but a second half equalizer forced the New Jersey club to settle for a 1-1 draw. The match, which was played at Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium on the campus of Harvard University, was the lone game of the evening for the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL).
“It is a disappointing result,” said Jim Gabarra, Sky Blue FC Technical Director & Head Coach. “Over our last two games, we have squandered an awful lot of goal scoring chances. We really should have left these past two games with six points. One point is just not good enough.”
Sky Blue FC opened the scoring in the 8th minute on a play that started off an interception by forward Nadia Nadim on the right flank of the midfield. Once the Danish striker turned upfield, she saw a racing Katy Freels in the center of the attack and quickly sent a hard roller to her in space. Freels then took a couple of touches before launching a left-footed rocket beyond the reach of Breakers netminder Jami Kranich, giving the visitors an early 1-0 advantage.
The New Jersey side continued to control the majority of possession during the first half, creating some dangerous opportunities that nearly stretched its lead to multiple goals. However, Boston was able to keep the slate clean the remainder of the opening 45 minutes, and Sky Blue FC took the same 1-0 score line into the locker room at the intermission.
The Breakers eventually equalized in this contest in the 60th minute. On the play, Boston defender Lauren Lazo sent service into the penalty area from the right flank, where goalkeeper Brittany Cameron went to the air to punch away the crossing attempt. Unfortunately for Sky Blue FC, the ball landed at the feet of Breakers striker Stephanie McCaffrey, who was able to place a strike into the far side netting to make it a level 1-1 game.
Sky Blue FC came as close as possible to recording a go-ahead tally in the 78th minute, with Nadim splitting the left side of the Boston defense before sending a hard roller over to a speeding Meg Morris on her right side. Morris, who had checked into the game less than a minute prior to the play, then hammered a right-footed strike that hit the bottom of the crossbar and appeared to pass the end line, but no goal was issued on the field.
After the close call, both sides continued to battle for the late game-winner, but it was not to be. When 90 minutes had been completed, a 1-1 count was the result.
“We have to do better with our chances,” Gabarra concluded. “In the second half, we sat back a little bit and took our foot off the gas. All of a sudden, we make one mistake and end up level instead of being comfortably ahead. We played really well and built off our momentum from last week, but we are at a point where we have to start finishing and coming away with wins.”
Sky Blue FC will next return home to Yurcak Field on Sunday, May 31st, to host the Houston Dash at 3:00 PM EST. Individual game tickets for that match 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. Boston Breakers
May 22, 2015 – Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium
Sky Blue FC: 1-0-1
SBFC 8 K.Freels (N.Nadim)
BOS 60 S.McCaffrey
SBFC – Cameron, Cutshall, Levin, Grubka, Hayes, DeCesare (Diedrich-91), Freels, Haagsma, Lytle (LaBonta-90), Gordon (Morris-77), Nadim
Substitutes Not Used: Bledsoe, Stanton, Wagner, Waldus
BOS: Kranich, Lazo, King, Kallman, Pathman, Barczuk, Schoepfer (Bia-90), Mewis, Rafinha (Pires-76), McCaffrey, Marlborough (Evans-84)
Substitutes: Brown, Ezurike, Wood, Verdoia