Women's Soccer News: Boston Breakers Earn 2-0 WPSL Elite Win over Philadelphia Fever
Schoepfer and Jones lead Boston to Tenth Win Overall
The Boston Breakers wrapped up their 2012 WPSL Elite home schedule in front of yet another packed house. A season-high 2,541 fans were on hand as Katie Schoepfer and Courtney Jones scored one goal each in a 2-0 win over the Philadelphia Fever Saturday night at Dilboy Stadium in Somerville, Mass. It was the seventh sellout in seven home games this season.
The win sends Boston's record to 10-3-0, and with Western New York Flash's 2-1 win over the Chicago Red Stars Saturday night, both Boston and Western New York (9-1-3) are tied for first in the WPSL Elite with 30 points.
"We were just hoping to keep the ball moving, open up seams, and then take our chances," Boston Breakers Head Coach Lisa Cole said. "It was important to get the W."
Saturday also marked PUMA Project Pink Night at Dilboy Stadium. The Breakers wore pink jerseys to raise awareness of breast cancer. The jerseys were auctioned off during the game. The auction brought in more than $2,800, which will go to Making Strides Against Breast Cancer.
"It's a pretty special night here for us. Project Pink is always such a special game for us because of the meaning behind it," Breakers captain Leslie Osborne said. "Wearing pink and making a statement as professional athletes is huge, especially in the community here in Boston, so it's always a fun game for us. It was our last home game of the season. We can (finish) first heading into the playoffs, so there's a lot on the line."
The Breakers pressured the Fever (1-9-2) throughout the entire match, besting the visitors in shots (23-1) and shots on goal (11-1). Bianca D'Agostino smashed a shot off the post in the 4th minute and Cat Whitehill's header was pushed over the bar just five minutes later. Schoepfer put the Breakers on the board in the 13th minute, burying a penalty kick past Fever keeper Michelle Dalton.
After Schoepfer's goal, her seventh on the season, the Breakers kept hammering away on Dalton. Melissa Henderson, Jessica Luscinski, D'Agostino, and Schoepfer all put quality shots on goal before the Breakers went ahead 2-0 on a goal by Jones. Jones' goal, her second of the season, began on a short corner taken by Schoepfer in the 42nd minute. Schopefer played it to Osborne. From there, Jones saw an opening and made the most of it to get in position.
"Their defense was all in the box and a little unorganized, so (Schoepfer) passed it to Leslie, but then she got stuck. I usually hang out with (Taryn Hemmings) in the back, but I went up a little farther, got it from Leslie, their defender came out, I took a touch from the right, hit it, and prayed for the best," Jones said.
The Breakers maintained possession throughout the second half, and kept hitting one shot after another on Dalton. Down the other end of the field Breakers keeper Alejandra Velasco made one save on the night to earn her first shutout of the season. She was aided by the play of defenders Whitehill, Elli Reed, Julie King, and Hemmings, who kept the Fever far away from threatening Velasco.
The Breakers head to Rochester, N.Y., on Sunday, July 22, to take on the Western New York Flash in their regular season finale, a match that could very well determine the WPSL Elite regular season champion. The Chicago Red Stars (27 points) still have two matches remaining on the season, while the fourth-place New York Fury (22 points) have three games left on their slate.
Boston, Chicago, New York, and Western New York will play in the WPSL Elite Championship Series semifinals on Wednesday, July 25, at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester, N.Y. The second- and third-place teams will square off at 5:00 p.m. ET, and the first- and fourth-place teams will meet each other at 8:00 p.m. ET. The winners of the semifinal matches will meet in the first-ever WPSL Elite championship game on Saturday, July 28, at 1:00 p.m. at Sahlen's Stadium.
The playoff matchups have yet to be determined and more than likely won't be until the final day of the regular season, which is Sunday, July 22, 2012. On that day, the Breakers play at Western New York (4:00 p.m. ET), while the Chicago Red Stars will play at the New York Fury (7:00 p.m.).
Related Articles: WPSL on SoccerNation