Sky Blue FC coaches Jim Gabarra and Rick Stainton have the team on a hot streak as of late (Photo by Howard C. Smith, ISI Photos).
Team Seeks to Extend Franchise Record Unbeaten Streak to Five Games
Sky Blue FC (2-3-3, 9 points) will return home to Yurcak Field in Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) action on Wednesday night, kicking off a midweek match with the Atlanta Beat (1-7-3, 6 points) at 7:00 p.m. The team is looking to extend its franchise record unbeaten streak to five games with a result against the Beat, also focused on remaining unbeaten in five total matches at home this season.
“Atlanta is coming off a weekend game while we did not play, so that can be a bit of a double-edged sword,” Sky Blue FC head coach Jim Gabarra stated. “They will be a little fatigued, but they will be sharp and ready to go at the same time. We will have to be very cautious about how we start the game, and we will have to continue to execute good team defending in an effort to get the clean sheet. On the other end of the field, we need to create chances and make sure we finish them off.”
In its four previous home contests this year, Sky Blue FC is 2-0-2 and has outscored the opposition by a tally of 7-3. Its seven goals at home this season already exceeds the team total of six scores at Yurcak Field in 2010, and its 3-0 win over the Beat earlier this year was the largest margin of victory in franchise history. Gabarra credits that home success with an attitude that the team developed early in preseason.
“To make the playoffs in this league, you have to get your points at home,” he remarked. “Something we stressed from day one of the preseason is we have to get results at home because it is difficult to play on the road. When we can depend on points at home, it gives us the option to play a little more conservatively on the road, and that creates the opportunity for us to pad our points.”
With the team receiving a bye this past weekend, Sky Blue FC was able to take some time off and now looks to recapture the momentum it created with the four-match unbeaten streak.
“We were fortunate to have a little bit of a break, so a midweek game is good for us to help in getting back into our momentum,” assistant coach Rick Stainton commented. “With Atlanta playing this past weekend, they have to turn around and play us right away. Hopefully, we can capitalize on that. Above all, we know we must play a complete game so we can gain some points and continue to climb the WPS ladder.”
Tickets for this pairing with the Beat are available now, and fans can purchase them online by clicking here. The gates at Yurcak Field will open at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, and fans who wish to purchase tickets the day of the match can do so at the stadium box office.