Former Rutgers goalkeeper Erin Guthrie kept the slate clean in the first half.
Sky Blue FC Defeats Scarlet Knights in Piscataway, 5-0
Finnish international Laura Kalmari turned in a hat trick on Thursday as Sky Blue FC of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) defeated Rutgers University in a 75-minute friendly in Piscataway, 5-0. Also scoring goals on the day were midfielders Allie Long and Therese Sjogran, with former Rutgers goalkeeper Erin Guthrie combining with Kristin Arnold to collect the shutout.
“We did better in the attacking third as far as our finishing is concerned,” Sky Blue FC head coach Jim Gabarra stated. “We did create some good chances to serve, but our serving was not what it should have been. Again, we found some things to work on, but we are still getting some things accomplished. At the end of the day, we got a good result.”
Kalmari locked up a hat trick in the 71st minute of this match, and Gabarra was very pleased with the performance she put forth under some rainy conditions.
“She did really well,” he remarked. “She was our one striker up front. She did well holding the ball up and getting some good scoring opportunities, creating chances for herself and finishing chances we created for her.”
The Finnish forward registered her first goal of the afternoon in the 13th minute when she made good on a feed from two-time NCAA Player of the Year Casey Nogueira. The former North Carolina standout then played a role in the next tally, playing a ball inward to Long in the 23rd minute, who collected it off a Scarlet Knight defender and quickly put it away. The following knock came five minutes later when Sjogran fired home a right-footed strike from Long, making the count 3-0. The final goal of the opening half then occurred in the 38th minute, with Kalmari recording her second notch after finishing distribution from midfielder Angie Kerr on the right flank.
Sky Blue FC continued to create opportunities in the second half of action, and Kalmari completed her hat trick in the 71st minute. Nogeuira dealt a feed to Kerr on the right side of the pitch, and the speedy midfielder then sent a cross into the middle of the box. Kalmari was there for the delivery and fought through two defenders, burying the ball into the back of the net.
With the whistle blowing four minutes later, Sky Blue FC saw itself emerge victorious with a 5-0 result.
Sky Blue FC has one more exhibition on tap this week, wrapping up preseason action on Sunday against Penn State University at Dideriksen Park in East Brunswick. That match is open to the public, and there is no charge for admission. The team will then open up its third season of play on Sunday, April 10th, when it hosts the Philadelphia Independence at Yurcak Field on the campus of Rutgers University in Piscataway. Tickets for the April 10th home opener are available now, and they can be purchased by calling 1-888-SBFC-TIX.