COLORADO PRIDE 2, COLORADO STORM 1
COLORADO SPRINGS, CO - The Colorado Pride took early season control of the UWS West Conference with a come-from-behind 2-1 victory in stoppage time against northern rival Colorado Storm in the team’s home opener on Sunday afternoon. Pride returnee Michaela Abam netted the game winner in the 92nd minute of the match, converting off a rebound of a shot from defender Beth Plentl. The win puts the Pride at 2-0 on the season while the Storm drop to 0-2-1.
“We wanted to make it a battle,” said Pride midfielder Lauren Milliet. “We had to win on our home turf.”
The Storm came into Colorado Springs a confident side after Thursday’s 1-1 road draw against a strong & experienced Santa Clarita Blue Heat (1-0-1) side. The Storm generated one shot in the first half but it was all the team needed. In the 6th minute, Storm midfielder Layla Ashouri drove the ball low to the near post off a corner kick. As it caromed through traffic, Storm forward Sadie Stark got a touch on the ball to put it past Pride goalkeeper Kaylyn Smith.
The Pride gathered themselves during the break and it didn’t take long for them to respond in the second half. In the 46th minute, Texas Tech grad Bri Rohmer stationed herself perfectly in front of net and headed in a cross from Washington State senior Kaitlyn Johnson. For Rohmer, it was her 2nd goal of the young season as she scored the lone goal in a 1-0 win over the Storm two weeks ago.
Fatigue began to show with the Storm as the second half continued, as the Pride outshot the visitors by a 7-1 margin (12-2 in the match). The Storm were within seconds of securing their second road point in two games when Plentl and Abam sent the crowd home happy. Plentl’s shot clanged off the crossbar and the Big XII First team selection raced for the ball. Adam shielded the ball from a defender, settled it and struck it past Storm goalkeeper Jalen Tompkins.
Up next for the Pride is a 4:00 PM MST kickoff this Sunday, June 12th at Colorado College’s Washburn Field against the Houston Aces (1-2). The Storm will host the Aces this Friday at Five Star Stadium in Thornton, CO at 7:00 PM MST.
HOUSTON ACES 1, REAL SALT LAKE WOMEN 4
HOUSTON, TX - Mother Nature has been most unkind to the Houston area in recent times, and the Real Salt Lake Women followed her inauspicious example this past Saturday night. The Houston Aces (1-2) hosted Real Women (1-1) in the rubber match of their season series at Houston Sports Park, hoping to follow up on their 1-0 road win the week before in Utah.
But the visitors would get their revenge, as RSL ran out to a three-goal lead in the first half and weathered a late comeback attempt from the Aces to notch the 4-1 victory. The Real Women offense were led by their forward tandem from Brigham Young University - Elena Medeiros and Michele Vasconcelos - who each notched two goals and an assist.
RSL would score three goals in a span of seven minutes in the first half. Vasconcelos would tally the first goal in the 17th minute off an assist from Medeiros. Team co-captain Annie Hawkins would assist Medeiros’ first goal of the game and eventual game-winner in the 21st minute. And to finish the three-goal run, Medeiros would again assist Vasconcelos for the 3-0 lead which would stick until halftime.
Houston would grow into the game in the second half, and earned a penalty kick in the 75th minute. Lindsay South Hamner would convert from the spot past Real Women keeper Erica Owens for the 3-1 score. RSL would than go a woman down, as they lost a player to injury after their full allotment of substitutions. After several minutes of defending, Medeiros would score on a counterattack in the 90th minute, with thanks to an assist from Vasconcelos.
The Real Women host Santa Clarita in a big UWS West showdown this Saturday, June 11th at Davis H.S. Stadium (6:00 PM MST).
SANTA CLARITA BLUE HEAT 1, COLORADO STORM 1
SANTA CLARITA, CA - The Santa Clarita Blue Heat hosted the Colorado Storm in their home opener at The Master’s College this past Thursday night. The Blue Heat (1-0-1) were hoping to continue the ride their offense started in their dominating win at Houston from their season opener two weeks prior. But the Storm would prove to be spoilers on this night, as Santa Clarita had to come back with a late goal to gain the 1-1 draw.
The Blue Heat held the run of play against the Storm in the first half but struggled to find good looks on goal. Colorado let Santa Clarita control the ball but not the score board. It only took three minutes into the second half for the Storm to start their road upset bid. Former Nebraska-Omaha midfielder Layla Ashouri’s corner kick would find defender Alexandra Huynh in the box for the go-ahead goal.
The Blue Heat would pick up the pace as the second half wore on. The combination of substitutes Kasandra Massey and Melissa Fernandez began to gradually influence the match in the home side’s favor. In the 84th minute, Santa Clarita midfielder Viviana Villacorta made a run through the middle of the pitch and laid the ball off left of goal. Fernandez got to the cross and assisted on Arielle Roy–Petitclerc’s game-tying goal.
“I thought we controlled possession and moved the ball well, but we didn’t bury it,” said Blue Heat head coach Guilherme Mitrovitch in a post-game interview with The SCV Signal. “I do think we have to be more clever in our attacking third.”
Santa Clarita out-shot the Storm by a 10-3 margin with Colorado keeper Cristina Salazar making five saves. Blue Heat keeper Jojo McCaskill made three saves in goal for her side.
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.