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UWS Preview: Week VI

06/13/2019, 6:00pm EDT

High stakes games in the Midwest & West this weekend


Friday, June 14

Connecticut Fusion (3-0-2) vs. Syracuse DA (2-1-1)
7:00 PM EDT | Farmington Sports Arena | MyCujoo

This will be the first-ever meeting between the Connecticut Fusion and Syracuse DA - the newest outfit in the United Women's Soccer (UWS) East Conference. Connecticut secured a 2-2 road draw and maintained their undefeated record last Sunday against the Rochester Lancers (1-2-2). Brenna Brown gave the Fusion a lead in the 20th minute as she powered home her first goal of the season. Rochester bounced back and goals from Elysia Masters and Taylor Wingerden puts the hosts ahead with 25 minutes to play. In the 88th minute, second-half sub Julie Lavoie collected a rebound and converted for the Fusion to secure the point. SDA have got off to a good start as they currently sit in fourth place. Syracuse have rattled off two straight wins at home prior to this match, including a 2-0 win against New Jersey Copa FC last Saturday. The SDA roster has some familiar faces to UWS play, headlined by reigning league MVP Brooke Barbuto. Barbuto has carried over her strong play to 2019 where she has tallied four goals and three assists, including the game-winner against NJ Copa last week.

Saturday, June 15

Lancaster Inferno (2-1-0) vs. LI Rough Riders (4-2-0)
5:00 PM EDT | Millersville University | MyCujoo

After a week off, the Lancaster Inferno are back on the pitch this weekend, hosting their second home game of the season. Lancaster currently reside in fifth place in the UWS East - four teams will qualify for the conference playoffs this season - but have time to make up ground. The Inferno have a tough opponent to test their mettle as the Long Island Rough Riders sit atop the conference table. Long Island have won three straight games, all via the shutout while scoring ten goals. Defender Amanda Buck has garnered UWS honors the last two weeks and forward Kayla Saager opened her 2019 account with a hat trick in the win over Worcester. Lancaster were victorious in Week IV action, earning a hard fought 1-0 win over New Jersey. Goalkeeper Kelly O'Brien was named the UWS Defensive Player of the Week for her five-save performance in the shutout. The only goal came in the 39th minute on a cross from the right flank by Teresa Rook that found Haley Crawford for a one-time finish at the near post. It was the second goal of the season for the James Madison University star.

New England Mutiny (4-0-1) vs. Syracuse DA (2-1-1)
7:00 PM EDT | Lusitano Stadium | MyCujoo

This will be the second game of a weekend road trip for Syracuse DA and the first-year side could not have asked for a tougher task. On Friday night SDA will face the second-place team in the UWS East while in this game they will take on the third-place New England Mutiny. Both of their opponents are undefeated and possess tough defenses. New England maintained their undefeated start via a 1-0 road win against New Jersey Copa FC on Wednesday. Kate Howarth took back the league lead in goals scored with her eighth tally of the season in the 80th minute. After a 1-1 draw with Connecticut in Week IV action, New England got back in the win column last weekend via a 5-0 home victory over the Worcester Smiles. Howarth's goal in the 26th minute proved to be the eventual game winner. The Mutiny scored four goals in the last 28 minutes of the match. Local star Hope Santaniello came on as a second half substitute and scored two goals to insure the win.


Sunday, June 16

Lansing United (6-0-0) vs. Detroit Sun (2-3-0)
2:00 PM EDT | East Lansing Soccer Complex | MyCujoo

Even though the Detroit Sun have lost their previous two games, they remain in fourth-place in the UWS Midwest. Four teams will qualify for the conference playoffs. Yet, they will have to break that mini-losing streak against undefeated Lansing United, who sit atop the table. Scoring goals (15) has not been the problem for Detroit this season, it has been allowing them as the team has a +1 goal differential. Two-time D2CCA National Player of the Year Gabriella Mencotti (5g, 4a) and Rachel Deluca (5g, 2a) are third and fourth on the UWS scoring chart. Detroit's defense, however, has allowed eight goals with three different goalkeepers in their last two losses. Lansing is riding on the success of the top defense in the Midwest (eight goals allowed in six games) and a rock solid offense. Goalkeeper Madison Clem (five wins) has allowed five goals in 360 minutes of action and is the reigning UWS Defensive Player of the Week. Team captain Dani Stephan has been the catalyst for United as the Michigan State University star has opened the scoring in the team's last three wins.

Indiana Union (4-1-1) vs. Grand Rapids FC (2-3-1)
4:00 PM EDT | Grand Park Event Center | MyCujoo

Continuing a weekend where the top four teams in the UWS Midwest are facing off against each other - almost like a preview of the upcoming conference playoffs in July - is the rematch between the Indiana Union and Grands Rapids FC. The second and third-place sides, respectively, faced off in Week III action and battled out to an exciting 3-3 draw. GRFC's leading scorer Riko Sagara gave the hosts the lead from the penalty spot in the 23rd minute. Four minutes later, Samantha Dewey tied the score for Indiana and the visitors took the lead into halftime with a goal from Cassidy Lindley in the 42nd minute. Ten minutes into the second half, Kendra Longoria tied the game and than GRFC team captain Marti Corby put her side ahead in the 67th minute. A late goal compliments of Delaney Benich ensured the two sides would share the points. Grand Rapids have gone 2-1 since that draw including a big 5-3 win over Detroit in their last game. Indiana is on a high after two road wins in Week V action while Dewey was named the UWS Offensive Player of the Week for her four goals combined in the victories.


Saturday, June 15

El Paso Surf (0-2-0) vs. San Antonio Athenians (1-1-0)
6:00 PM MDT | Americas High School | MyCujoo

Even though the San Antonio Athenians have only played two games this season, Saturday's road match at the El Paso Surf will need to be treated like a knockout match. The Houston Aces lead the UWS Southwest with a 4-0 record and San Antonio must win every game they have to maintain pressure on the defending champions. The Athenians did just that last weekend against FC Austin Elite. Allison Fahey came on as a second half substitute and scored two goals in the home side's come-from-behind 3-2 victory. Christina Arteaga capitalized on a turnover to give FC Austin (0-2-0) the 1-0 lead in first half injury time. Fahey scored in the 58th minute and than Megan Wilcox put San Antonio ahead by a 2-1 score. The visitors tied the game in the 90th minute before Fahey's heroics as the final seconds ticked off the clock. El Paso has been on the wrong end of two defeats to Houston to start the season and have yet to notch a goal. The Surf can play the early role of spoilers in the second home game of the rebranded organization.

Sunday, June 16

FC Austin Elite (0-2-0) vs. Houston Aces (4-0-0)
6:00 PM CDT | Elite Field (Round Rock) | MyCujoo

After a tough loss in the waning seconds of last weekend's game against San Antonio, FC Austin Elite will look to rebound in a big way in their home opener against the conference leaders. The Houston Aces received their biggest scare this season on May 25th against Austin, as they had to eke out a 1-0 win at home. In the 29th minute, Jen LaPonte placed the ball into the right-hand side of the net from the middle of six-yard box for the only goal of the match. The duo of Alexis Espino and Gabriela Lopez made four saves in goal for Aces. In their last match, the Aces dominated the El Paso Surf en route to a 6-0 verdict. Lauren Hughes tallied four goals including strikes in the 7th and 12th minutes. The former Rice University star and UWS Team of the Week selection scored the final two goals of the match in the 75th and 77th minutes. Hughes leads the team in goals scored (7) which is good for second in the league.


Friday, June 14

Calgary Foothills (2-0-0) vs. Santa Clarita Blue Heat (2-1-0)
7:00 PM MDT | Mount Royal University | MyCujoo

It will be a very intriguing weekend in the UWS West as both Los Angeles-area teams will travel north to the Canadian prairie for a two-game weekend. This will be an opportunity for both visitors and hosts alike to make a statement in the battle for the conference crown. Calgary Foothills WFC are the defending West champions and the Santa Clarita Blue Heat will pose their toughest test of the season so far. This will be the first game for both sides after a two-week layoff. The inaugural prairie derby to open the 2019 campaign between Calgary and Queen City United went the former's way but the first year side put up a fight in their match during Week IV action. Tanya Boychuk's penalty kick in the 24th minute and a powerful header from Joelle Gosselin in the 79th minute were just enough in a narrow 2-1 win for Foothills. Calgary opened their season with a 5-0 win over Queen City as Boychuk - a member of the U-20 Canadian WNT - led the offense with a four-goal performance.

Queen City United (0-2-0) vs. LA Galaxy (3-0-0)
8:00 PM CST | University of Regina | MyCujoo

After two games against the defending West champion Calgary to open their season, the going does not get easier for Queen City United as LA Galaxy OC come to town. Their home opening loss was a tough lesson but Queen City learned from it and battled to a close 2-1 defeat in Week IV action. Taylor Bubnick scored the first-ever goal for United in the 52nd minute on her birthday, threading a free kick inside the far post through a crowd of players. United have not played in two weeks which might be an advantage for LA Galaxy OC. The current conference leaders are in the midst of a three-game road trip and were victorious last weekend in Colorado. LA swept the season series with the Colorado Pride via a 4-0 win in the second of back-to-back games against them. Millene Cabral scored two goals and Sonest Furtado opened the scoring in the first minute of play in the Week V victory. Hillary Beall made two saves in goal for the visitors and has allowed only one goal in three games.

Saturday, June 15

Queen City United (0-2-0) vs. Santa Clarita Blue Heat (2-1-0)
8:00 PM CST | University of Regina | MyCujoo

Its been a two-week layoff for the Santa Clarita Blue Heat but they are on a two-game winning streak after a tough 4-0 loss to LA Galaxy OC to open the season. The Santa Clarita Blue Heat swept the season series with the Colorado Pride in Week IV action, getting their second win in seven days via a 2-1 result at home. Santa Clarita opened the scoring in the 42nd minute as Yadira Toraya found Lauren Sesselmann from 30 yards out on a free kick. Colorado tied the match in the 61st minute before UCLA star Ashley Sanchez tallied a spectacular game winner eight minutes later, chipping the Pride goalkeeper from distance. In Week III action on the road, goals from Tara McKeown and Hailey Phipps propelled the Blue Heat to a 2-0 win.

Sunday, June 16

Calgary Foothills (2-0-0) vs. LA Galaxy (3-0-0)
2:00 PM MDT | Mount Royal University | MyCujoo

Sunday's game against Calgary and LA Galaxy OC will pit the first and second-place sides from last year's campaign against each other once again. The hosts of this week's match won both games against the visitors during the 2018 season by a combined 5-1 margin. Those two games proved to be the difference in the race for the UWS West title as Calgary finished one point ahead of LA in the final standings. The last time these two teams played against each other was on July 6, 2018 and Foothills came away with a 2-0 road win. Jessica Jones scored the game winner in the 12th minute and former Canadian WNT member Alex Lamontagne netted the insurance tally in the 45th minute. After a stint as a professional in France for FC Fleury 91 in the Division 1 Féminine, Lamontagne has resigned with Calgary and will be in uniform this weekend.

Tag(s): News  Connecticut Fusion  Lancaster Inferno  LI Rough Riders  New England Mutiny  Detroit Sun  Grand Rapids FC  Indiana Union  Lansing United  El Paso Surf  FC Austin Elite  Houston Aces  San Antonio Athenians  Calgary Foothills  LA Galaxy  Santa Clarita Blue Heat  Queen City United  Syracuse DA