June 4, 2011

Late Goal Gives Sky Blue Tie Against WNY

Casey Nogueira scored in the 88th minute of the match, as Sky Blue forced Western New York to a 2-2 draw at Sahlen Stadium on Sunday evening. It was only the second time all season that the Flash had not come away with a victory.

The first quarter of the match saw no goals and few opportunities. Both sides were missing players to national team duty, Whitney Engen and Alex Morgan for WNY and Heather O'Reilly and Tobin Heath for Sky Blue. In addition, Flash defender Candace Chapman was out with an injury.

Western New York struck first in the 39th minute. A Gemma Davison cross found the head of Christine Sinclair and the Canadian striker made no mistake in finishing her fifth goal of the season.

Just five minutes later, it was Sinclair setting up Caroline Seger, who had broken free from her mark and Seger made it 2-0 just before halftime.

Sky Blue nearly drew even in the 60th minute, but Flash goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris was able to make consecutive saves on Nogueira and Therese Sjögran to keep Sky Blue off the scoreboard.

The Flash maintained their lead until the 65th minute, when they were whistled for a hand ball in the box and Sky Blue was awarded a shot from the penalty spot. Sky Blue's Allie Long converted the penalty to put Sky Blue within one.

As in the previous week, it was late game heroics for Sky Blue. Laura Kalmari sent a cross to the middle and Casey Nogueira was able to collect, flick the ball over the head of McCall Zerboni and finish with a volley to tie the match at two. And that is how the match ended.

Sky Blue's record goes to 2-3-2 and they have collected seven points in their last three outings. Western New York, still unbeaten, suffered only the second blemish to their schedule for the season and stand at 6-0-2, still nine points clear of second place magicJack who plays in Boston on Sunday.

Excerpts for this story were taken from WPS press releases.