May 12, 2010

WPS Midweek Notes - May 12

Bardsley Is WPS Player of the Week

Sky Blue goalkeeper, Karen Bardsley, has been named WPS Player of the Week. Bardsley posted her 3rd shutout of the season against the Atlanta Beat in Sky Blue’s 1-0 victory. Bardsley made 13 saves in the match, while keeping the Beat off the scoreboard. Bardsley currently leads WPS in saves, shots faced, shutouts, and goals against average, among those that have played enough to qualify. She became the 2nd Sky Blue goalkeeper to win the award. Jen Branam was named Player of the Week at the end of last season.

Athletica to Wear Special Uniforms to Support Breast Cancer Research

Saint Louis Athletica will wear special uniforms in their May 16 match against Sky Blue FC. To commemorate their support for the Susan G. Komen St. Louis Race for the Cure®, each Athletica uniform will bear the name of a person who has battled the disease on the front of the jersey, honoring 22 individuals who have been diagnosed with breast cancer.

“It was quite an honor to be chosen as the honorary Race co-chairs,” stated Athletica Captain Lori Chalupny. “Wearing the names of these women who have battled breast cancer on our jersey is just a small way we can honor them and everyone who has ever been diagnosed with the disease. We feel like we are bringing them onto the field with us by doing this, and I think it will be inspiring to pull those jerseys on before the game on Sunday.”

The 22 names include local breast cancer survivors, and relatives or friends of Athletica players who have battled breast cancer. The uniform will be an all white kit with pink lettering and numbering. PUMA, the WPS uniform provider, has also designed a specific pink game ball that will be used exclusively for the match.

Around the League

Atlanta BeatRamona Bachmann managed to get off 8 shots in the match against Sky Blue, with 5 of them being on goal…..Only Stacy Bishop, Leigh Ann Robinson, and Mami Yamaguchi have played every minute of all 5 matches…..The Beat drew 7248 fans to the home opener in their new stadium. It’s the 2nd largest WPS crowd of the year to the game that Washington played Saint Louis at RFK Stadium.

Boston BreakersAshley Phillips earned her first career shutout against Washington last Saturday…..Kelly Smith continues to be the most fouled player with 15 fouls suffered. Last season she tied Lori Chalupny for the lead with 46…..The Breakers have only scored more than one goal once in their last 14 matches.

Chicago Red Stars – Although allowing two goals for the first time in her career, Jill Loyden stopped a penalty shot in Saturday’s match against Gold Pride…..There have been 6 players red carded in league history. Ifeoma Dieke became the 3rd Red Star to be red carded following Frida Ă–stberg and Karen Carney last year…..Chicago is the only team that has yet to play at least one of the two expansion teams, but they will meet Philadephia at home this weekend.

FC Gold PrideKelley O’Hara became the first player from the January, 2010 draft to record a goal and an assist this season…..Gold Pride has attempted the only two penalty kicks this season in WPS, both unsuccessful…..With their victory over Chicago, Gold Pride became the 2nd team ever to win 4 consecutive regular season matches, the other being Los Angeles. Gold Pride will seek to break the record on Friday against the Breakers.

Philadelphia IndependenceAmy Rodriguez leads the league in shots on goal with 15, 5 ahead of 2nd place Marta…..For the first time, Lori Lindsey did not figure in the scoring of an Independence goal, but her long pass from Philly’s side of the half line sent Rodriguez in alone, before Lyndsey Patterson banged home the rebound…..Japanese forward Karina Maruyama got her first start of the year against Saint Louis last Saturday.

Saint Louis AthleticaLindsay Tarpley started her first match since coming back from an ACL injury and scored her 1st goal for Saint Louis…..Shannon Boxx picked up her 3rd caution of the season, meaning she will have to go 4 matches without a card to avoid suspension…..Athletica has a 7 game regular season home unbeaten streak with a 5-0-2 record over that stretch.

Sky Blue FC – In spite of missing the last two games with an injury, Tasha Kai has scored half of Sky Blue’s 4 goals, with another being an own goal. Laura Kalmari is the only other SBFC player to have scored…..Including the playoffs, Sky Blue’s last 5 wins have come by 1-0 margins…..Sky Blue has been outshot by an astounding 92-43 margin this season.

Washington FreedomErin McLeod earned her first shutout of the season against Boston on Saturday…..Becky Sauerbrunn is now the only player to have played in every minute of both the 2009 and 2010 seasons…..The game against the Breakers marked the first time the Freedom have been shutout since their 1-0 loss to the Los Angeles Sol on July 5, 2009.

Trivia Question - Behind Becky Sauerbrunn, which current WPS player now has the 2nd longest active streak for consecutive minutes played in the regular season?