(May 7, 2016) – It took a second half set-piece goal from Christen Press for the Chicago Red Stars to beat the Boston Breakers, 1-0, in front of 3,662 fans at Jordan Field Saturday night in Allston, Mass.
After 60 minutes of scoreless, back-and-forth play, it was Press who put the Red Stars ahead when a Chicago corner bounced off of a Boston defender and Press charged hard for the rebound and sent an untouchable rocket into the top corner of the net for the 1-0 lead.
“Again we lost on a set piece. I mean it was a great strike from Christen Press and it was worthy of winning any game,” said Boston Breakers head coach Matt Beard.
The Breakers (0-4-0) played the Red Stars (3-1-0) tough, as none of Chicago’s run of play scoring chances resulted in goals, and Boston couldn’t deliver on the other end despite creating several chances.
In the 15th minute, Kyah Simon settled a ball from Kristie Mewis and sent it dangerously across the goalmouth and out for a corner. On the ensuing corner from Mewis, the Breakers put three shots on goal, from Whitney Engen, Julie King and Simon couldn’t find their way past Chicago keeper Alyssa Naeher.
“That extra step, that extra inch, that extra jump. That little tiny extra effort, we need to find it. I think we are starting to get on the same page, we’re making progress,” said King.
In the 22nd minute, Stephanie McCaffrey back heeled a ball into the path of Louise Schillgard. The Swedish international worked down into the Chicago box and beat three defenders before being pulled down without a call.
“At the end of the day we’ve just got to score goals,” King. “I feel like we had a lot of opportunities that we didn’t finish, but so far that’s kind of the story of our season.”
Mewis was behind Boston’s most dangerous chances throughout the game. In the 39th minute, Julie Johnston took down Mewis as she tried to turn to goal, giving Boston a penalty kick. Mewis sent the penalty kick towards the right side of the net, but it hit off of the post and Naeher nicked the rebound out to keep the game scoreless.
In the 72nd minute, Mewis was on the receiving end of a Schillgard cross but her header – destined for the goal - went directly into the head of Chicago’s Samantha Johnson. In the waning minutes of the game, it was Mewis who settled the ball in the front of goal and fought through defenders to try and get a shot off only to have it smothered by Naeher.
“We keep talking about luck and obviously Kristie hits the post on the penalty, the chance at the end where the header hits the back of Samantha Johnson’s head. It just sort of sums up our luck in front of goal,” said Beard.
Boston did well to quell offensive build-up from Chicago and when tested the goalkeepers rose to the occasion.
Abby Smith was tested in the sixth minute when Jennifer Hoy was set up nicely facing the goal. Smith picked up where she left off last week, lunging to her left to make the save. Libby Stout replaced an injured Smith late in the first half. Stout got her first test in the 53rd minute when Hoy found herself in the position to take an open shot but Stout stretched to her left and palmed the ball away. Stout made another diving save thirty minutes later, this time to her right on a long-range shot from Press.
Defender Kassey Kallman in action Saturday night vs. Chicago (ISI Photos/Mike Gridley)
Smith finished with four saves, while Stout ended with three stops. Naeher made saves.
“We’re in a position now where I’m quite comfortable knowing that we can play a certain way and do certain things,” Beard noted. “Like Julie (King) said, we’ve got to be a little more ruthless in front of goal, a little more brave and hopefully the chances we’re creating will start to go in.”
The Breakers head to New Jersey Friday to take on Sky Blue FC at 7 p.m. ET before returning home on May 22 to face back-to-back NWSL champions, FC Kansas City. Tickets can be purchased by calling 617-945-1704 or by visiting www.breakerstickets.com.
Notes: Tonight marked the professional debut of Elise Krieghoff. The rookie from Cal-Poly came on in the 86th minute … Midfielder Katie Schopefer made her 84th appearance in a Breakers uniform and 89th professional appearance. She ranks second all-time in appearances for the Breakers … Defender Julie King made her 74th appearance for the Breakers, pulling to within two of tying Angela Hucles for fourth all-time in franchise history.
Match: Boston Breakers vs. Chicago Red Stars
Date: May 7, 2016
Venue: Jordan Field, Allston, Mass.
Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET
Weather: 49 degrees, cloudy
BOS: Abby Smith (Libby Stout, 32), Julie King, Kassey Kallman, Whitney Engen (C), Mollie Pathman, McCall Zerboni, Angela Salem (Elise Krieghoff, 86),
Kristie Mewis, Louise Schillgard, Stephanie McCaffrey, Kyah Simon (Katie Schoepfer, 67)
Subs not used: Brooke Elby, Christen Westphal
CHI: Alyssa Naeher, Arin Gilliland, Julie Johnston, Casey Short, Samantha Johnson, Alyssa Mautz, Jen Hoy (Amanda DaCosta, 55), Vanessa DiBernardo (Katie Naughton, 90) , Danielle Colaprico, Sofia Huerta, Christen Press (C)
Subs not used: Michele Dalton, Taylor Comeau, Courtney Raetzman
GOALS 1 2 F
Boston (0-4-0) 0 0 0
Chicago (3-1-0) 0 1 1
Goal Time Team Goal Scorer Assist
1 60 CHI Christen Press
SHOTS ON GOAL
CHI: Jen Hoy (caution, 7’)
Referee: Margaret Domka
Assistant Referees: Amanda Ross, Tom Felice
Fourth Official: Scott McGrail