July 30, 2011

Capacity Crowd Sees Sky Blue Fall to Flash

A crowd of 5065 saw the host Sky Blue side fall to Western New York by a 4-1 margin. The victory boosts Western New York into a tie for first place, while Sky Blue falls into a third place tie with magicJack.

The Flash tried to get on the board quickly as Christine Sinclair nearly scored in the opening minute, but her shot hit the post.

Sky Blue took the lead midway through the first half. Therese Sjogran fed Spanish striker Adriana and she slid her shot past Flash goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris for a 1-0 lead.

However, Western New York came back with a vengeance, scoring three goals in less than ten minutes. McCall Zerboni tied the score in the 29th minute as she was able to sneak a hard shot past Sky Blue keeper Jen Branam. Just six minutes later, Yael Averbuch set up Marta to give the Flash the lead. Three minutes later, the Flash scored off of a Candace Chapman free kick as Sinclair headed it home to make it 3-1.

The score stayed that way until the waning moments of the match as Alex Morgan scored in stoppage time on an assist by Beverly Goebel.

Western New York outshot Sky Blue by a 21-8 margin and held the edge in shots on goal as well with a 10-4 advantage.

The Flash improve their record to 9-2-3 and they are now tied with Philadelphia for 1st place with a game in hand. The Independence play Atlanta on Sunday. Sky Blue falls to 5-6-4, but still have a share of third place.

Western New York hosts Boston on Wednesday night. Sky Blue travels to Florida to meet magicJack in a battle for third place, also on Wednesday evening.

Jen Branam announced before the match that she would be retiring at the end of the season. Branam has been a member of Sky Blue since the beginning and helped lead them to the 2009 WPS championship. Sky Blue plans to retire her number 23 jersey.