Monday, April 18, 2011

3 Canadians take part in Flash victory

Sunday April 17th, 2011  the Western New York Flash competed in its inaugural WPS regular season match. Their first victim were the Boston Breakers who just last week bulldozed over the Atlanta Beat in a 4-1 victory.

Right from the get-go both teams battled for possession. WNY created the majority of opportunities, but the Breakers came roaring back in the bottom half of the 1st. It wasn't till the 66th minute where star striker, Christine Sinclair opened the scoring. Rookie Alex Morgan sent a a sqaure ball to Sinclair who took one touch then snuck it past 'keeper Alyssa Naeher.

In the 90th minute, Gemma Davison made a bullet run and whistled the ball past Naeher giving the Flash a 2 nil lead.

In stoppage time, English international, Kelly Smith added more excitement to the game capitilizing on a Cheney rebound that robbed Ashlyn Harris of a clean sheet. The last minute push was a little too late for Boston and the WNY Flash earned its first franchise W.

Breaking down Canadians play: Let's start from the back line up.

Chandace Chapman: Flash seemed to have major defensive problems early on allowing Boston in behind their back line. With a few adjustments Candace was able to effectively break up chances and make offensive runs. Probably her most memorable highlight of the night was late in the game where she blocked a dangerous Breakers shot with her body. All in all good start to the season.

Kelly Parker: Fresh off a foot injury, Parker made a late appearance. She probably played a total of 3 minutes but what from what I saw she's looking fit and hungry. I can't say anything bad about this woman. Agile, fast, great on the ball, quick reflexes, energetic. What I'd really like to know is whether or not she'll be called up for Canada's next training camp. Huge asset to Canada's mid section IMO.

Christine Sinclair: Early in the 1st half Sincy had a great chance to put her side up 1-0 but decided to pass. I see what she was trying to do there, Morgan would have been wide open had that pass gone thru, but Christine really should have been selfish and taken the shot. However she made up for it by scoring WNY first ever goal. Her touch and speed showed up today. She even made some defensive plays.

Credit definitely needs to go to WNY teammates, Alex Morgan and Caroline Seger. It is really hard to wrap my head around the fact that this was Morgan's WPS debut performance. She plays like a veteran. Calm on the ball, able to get past players 1v1 and fast, soft spoken and carries herself well off the pitch. She did miss an open netter to score WNY's first goal but that's one mistake out of the dozens of good things she produced. I absolutely love the Seger-Morgan-Sinclair combo. It's great to watch and can only get better. Christine's comments on the game: “They’re a stacked team, and to come here and get a win, it’s very positive. Hopefully it’s a sign of things to come. Because of international duties, we haven’t played together too much during the preseason. We’re only going to improve with more time together.”

Player of the Match goes to Caroline Seger. Dominant from start to finish. Seems like every 2 minutes she had the ball at her feet or involved in the play somehow. She had a chance to score early on but her shot was cleared off the line. Caroline is just an all around player, able to help out defensively and create chances up front. Considering the team as a whole haven't been together for long, Seges clicked well with Morgan and Sinclair. It'll be really exciting to see how they fair when they train more often. Marta will be a great addition too.

WNY Flash take on Atlanta Beat April 24th at KSU Soccer Stadium. You can watch live on FSC at 6pm ET.

Boston starting XI: Alyssa Naeher, Alex Scott, Rachel Buehler, Amy LePeilbet (Ifeoma Dieke, 80'), Stephanie Cox (Elli Reed, 85'), Leslie Osborne, Keelin Winters, Kelley O'Hara, Taryn Hemmings (Liz Bogus, 69'), Lauren Cheney, Kelly Smith

WNY starting XI: Ashlyn Harris, Candace Chapman, Whitney Engen, Ali Riley, Kandace Wilson, Brittany Bock, Becky Edwards, Caroline Seger, Kaley Fountain (Gemma Davison, 64'), Christine Sinclair, Alex Morgan (Kelly Parker, 90+)

No comments:

Post a Comment