REAL SALT LAKE WOMEN 0, HOUSTON ACES 1
KAYSVILLE, UT - It was a beautiful night at Davis High School Stadium for Real Salt Lake Women’s home opener against the Houston Aces, and their fans responded with a record-breaking crowd of over 700 in attendance. Unfortunately, the Aces (1-1) would get top marks in their role as the spoiler, as their defense bent but did not break in the face of a determined Real Women (0-1) attack in the 1-0 road win in UWS West Conference action.
Real Salt Lake were well-prepared for this match and came out firing, creating four quality scoring chances in the first twenty minutes. Forward Madie Lyons almost converted in the 12th minute but it took one of the many solid saves from Houston goalkeeper Courtney Seelhorst (five saves) in the first half to keep her shot out. Team co-captain Colette Smith was also a pest for the Aces defense but the game would go into halftime scoreless.
In the second half, RSLW forward Brecken Mozingo almost poked her shot past Seelhorst in the 54th minute. As the clock kept ticking away late in the match, signs of frustration from their squandered scoring chances began to show for the Real Women. In games like this where the home side holds the run of play but it doesn’t translate to the score board, it only takes one quality scoring chance from the road team to grab the result.
And in the 71st minute, Houston did just that. A well-placed cross by Aces defender Shauna Peare found the head of forward Paige Hayward and then the back of the net, slipping by the surging run of Real goalkeeper Rebecca Ritchie (two saves). The Real Women pressed on with urgency and created a few more chances, but it just wasn't to be and Houston escaped into the cool night air with a victory.
Although disappointed with the result, RSL Women Head Coach Mark Davis was very pleased with the effort and play of his team. His side out-shot the Aces by a 16-9 margin and also out-cornered the opposition, 10-2.
“We finish a few of our quality chances early in the match and its an entirely different game,” said Davis. “But with that said, I am very pleased with the effort and the way the ladies left it all on the pitch tonight. We will make some adjustments and keep working hard and I'm confident we can get the result we want next week in Houston."
The two teams will square off again, this time in Houston on Saturday, June 4th at Houston Sports Park (7:00 PM CST). The Real Women will be back at Davis H.S. Stadium on Saturday, June 11th and hope to see as many excited fans as they did in this match when they take on the Santa Clarita Blue Heat (1-0) at 6:00 PM MST.
NEW JERSEY COPA F.C. 4, NEW YORK MAGIC 0
WEST WINDSOR TOWNSHIP, NJ - New Jersey Copa F.C. hosted their second consecutive match at Mercer County Community College, but we’re still looking for their first home win. The 1-1 draw with the Long Island Rough Riders (1-0-1) was a positive result, but Copa wanted to grab all three points as they try to stake a claim in the UWS East Conference race. The 4-0 win over the New York Magic (0-2) on Sunday afternoon did just that, as NJCFC now lead the East with a 2-1-1 record.
Midfielder Alexandra Tinfow scored the eventual game-winning goal in the 11th minute on a cross from forward Phoenetia Browne, but it would take until the second half for Copa to put the game away. NJCFC were awarded a penalty kick in the 62nd minute, but Magic goalkeeper Samantha Depken (10 saves) would deny midfielder Jackie Bruno’s attempt for her team’s second goal of the match.
Copa would get the insurance goal just four minutes later, as forward Krystyna Freda notched her third goal of the season on an assist from Bruno. Midfielder Jenny Bitzer would make the score 3-0 for the home side in the 71st minute, scoring on her strike from outside the penalty area. Freda would tally her second goal of the match and fourth of the season in the 84th minute with thanks to midfielder Alexandra Nata.
With her four goals scored on the season, Freda is now tied with Kate Howarth of the New England Mutiny for the league lead. Usually a starter for Head Coach Roberto Aguas, Krystyna was nursing an injury and entered the game as a substitute in the 43rd minute and helped ignite the NJCFC offense (14 shots on goal, 28 total in match).
“I was very focused as I stepped on the field coming off the bench for this game,” said Freda. “I wanted to help the team in any way I could and was fortunate enough to put myself in good positions as my teammates found me up top. Doing my part to get another three points for our team felt great.”
The Copa defense was dominant in this win, as they limited New York to only three shots in the entire match. Last week’s UWS East Defensive Player of the Week Kristyn Shea (one save) got the win in goal but it was the midfield and defense that did the job in shutting down the Magic attack. The team has allowed only two goals in the past three games. NJCFC would also take more corner kicks in the win (9-1).
“We truly worked hard yesterday as a defensive unit,” said Copa defender Callie Duliba. “We allowed three shots the entire game which helped tremendously in the team shutout.”
About United Women’s Soccer (UWS): UWS is a national women’s soccer league sanctioned by U.S. Soccer through the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA). UWS is a professionally operated league created for teams that meet high minimum standards. The season runs from May until the end of July, culminating in a National Championship match. The UWS player pool is comprised of college players, aspiring & former professionals and international stars. You can follow UWS on social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
UWS is managed by EDP, a leading soccer management company that runs a number of leagues and tournaments. In addition to UWS, EDP operates youth leagues that includes an NPL league, the EDP Super Club program, the EDP Premier League and the EDP Championship League. EDP also runs EDP Futures programs for U-7’s to U-12’s and it conducts more than 20 youth tournaments, including tournaments within its EDP Cup Series and EDP Showcase Series.
Media can contact UWS Director of Communications Jorma Kansanen by e-mail at Press@UWSSoccer.com. You can visit the league’s official website at UWSSoccer.com. Interested team applicants can contact League Commissioner Joe Ferrara by e-mail at Joe@UWSSoccer.com.
(Photo credit to Ryan Kelly).