Therese Sjogran assisted on the lone Sky Blue FC tally (Photo by Howard C. Smith, ISI Photos).
Western New York Hands Sky Blue FC a 3-1 Road Defeat
Sky Blue FC (0-3-1, 1 point) ran into tough opposition on Friday night in the form of the first place Western New York Flash (3-0-1, 10 points), suffering a 3-1 road defeat at Sahlen Stadium in Rochester. The team did see a promising newcomer in Spanish international Adriana, who tallied a goal just one minute into her WPS career, but the single notch would not be enough to hold off the eventual winners.
Western New York wasted little time in this match, getting on the scoreboard in just the 5th minute of the contest. After an early offensive push, five-time FIFA Player of the Year Marta headed a ball through the Sky Blue FC defense to first-year striker Alex Morgan, who then side-stepped road netminder Karen Bardsley and placed the feed into the back of the net. While the game was still very young, the Flash saw itself enjoying an early 1-0 advantage.
Starting up top for Sky Blue FC in this pairing was Finnish international Laura Kalmari and two-time NCAA Player of the Year Casey Nogueira, and the duo nearly made a successful connection in the 19th minute. At that time, Nogueira dealt a ball from the end line to Kalmari, who then delivered a strike towards the inside of the upper near post. However, Western New York goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris was there to prevent the ball from doing damage.
The Flash eventually increased its lead in the 40th minute of this affair, when Marta got a play started off a short corner to forward Kelly Parker on the wing. Parker then touched it back to the Brazilian striker, who sent a ball to the top of the box. There awaiting the distribution was midfielder Caroline Seger, who powered a hard shot from 20 yards out and into the goal, giving her side a 2-0 first half edge.
Sky Blue FC then saw the two-goal deficit remain standing when the whistle blew to break the action for intermission.
The spark that Sky Blue FC needed was found in the form of second half substitution Adriana, a Spanish striker who is known for her prolific goal scoring in Europe. She checked into the game for her first-ever WPS action in the 65th minute, and she needed just one minute to make her impression felt. Swedish international Therese Sjogran found her just inside the box when she looked to distribute in the 66th minute of play, and Adriana immediately powered the ball into the net to close the gap to 2-1.
However, Western New York was able to respond in the 78th minute when Morgan returned the favor to Marta on a win sealing notch, hanging the eventual 3-1 final tally.
After three consecutive road matches, Sky Blue FC will now finally return home to Yurcak Field on Saturday, May 21st, to host the Atlanta Beat at 7:00 p.m. Tickets for that outing are available now by calling 888-SBFC-TIX.