Sky Blue FC and Chicago Red Stars Battle to a 1-1 Draw

Photo: Sky Blue FC

By MC Bousquette
Staff Writer

Though Sky Blue FC and the Chicago Red Stars entered the match in search of three points, efforts from both sides resulted in a 1-1 draw, with goals from Adriana Leon and Sam Kerr coloring the fast-paced encounter.  

Sky Blue made their way rapidly downfield in the first, holding early possession with a series of corners, but failing to convert. The Red Stars weren’t quiet in response, however, and just fifteen minutes into the match, Leon found the back of the net off an assist from Arin Gililand.

As the sides battled up and down the field, Christen Press made her first attempt at goal on a free kick in the 27th minute, but missed high over the crossbar. Ten minutes later, Kerr charged her way into the Red Stars half, defeating numerous Chicago defenders and completing the effort with a single-handed equalizer.

Press attempted to give the Red Stars a goal advantage as the half came to a close, but her low strike was saved by the alert Brittany Cameron.

The high-intensity first half ended 1-1, as both sides showed no signs of letting up. After the end of the first half, Michelle Wenino came on in an effort to give Gililand a chance to rest.

The second half commenced at the same pace, as the Red Stars attained early possession of the ball. Press sent another shot inbound just a couple of minutes in, but Cameron made another successful save.

Sky Blue retorted as Kelley O’Hara sent a dangerous corner finding Hayley Haagsma’s head, but the effort was ultimately to no avail as Leon cleared the ball from danger in the 49th minute. Press roared back into the danger zone again, but Press’ attempt missed just wide of goal.

In the 56th minute, Coach Jim Gabarra sought to shake up the match as Sarah Killion relieved Taylor Lytle.  The match’s next threatening effort came in the 63rd minute as Kerr raced downfield yet again, but sent her shot weakly into goalkeeper Michele Dalton.

Alyssa Mautz came on for Leon in the 69th minute, missing a volley just left of goal moments into her shift. As Chicago continued to pressure Sky Blue, Jen Hoy took a shot in the 71st minute, but the effort was deflected out of danger by Caitlin Foord.

Press almost pulled off a dangerous breakaway in the 74th minute, but Sky Blue’s Lindsi Cutshall tracked back at lightning pace to thwart Press’ effort. Vanessa DiBernardo tried again with a shot off a corner, but Cameron knocked the attempt away.

Moments later, O’Hara fed the ball into Katy Freels, but Freels’ high shot was knocked out of play. O’Hara wasn’t done there as she sent a corner into Nikki Stanton, whose header missed just high of goal in the 81st minute.

Chicago’s final substitute came in the 82nd minute as Sofia Huerta, contending with a quad injury, entered for Lori Chalupny. The match’s back and forth nature continued, as Chicago built on their attack. However, it seemed as if Sky Blue pulled off the go-ahead goal in the 86th, but Janelle Filigno, who subbed on for Nadia Nadim seconds before, was called for a handball and the goal was rescinded. Seeking redemption, Filigno took on the Chicago defense one on one, but failed to penetrate the box.

The Red Stars made their final concerted effort to take the lead as DiBernardo sent the ball downfield to Huerta, but Huerta was defeated by a combination of Rampone and Stanton.

Mautz and O’Hara collided head to head in the 88th, but O’Hara was upright relatively quickly. O’Hara had a great chance at goal as Kerr craftily sent a cross around Julie Johnston, but O’Hara couldn’t get her foot on the ball quickly enough to finish. After additional back and forth in stoppage time, with no particularly threatening efforts, the match concluded in a 1-1 draw.

Sky Blue FC faces the Portland Thorns FC on Saturday, August 22nd at 7pm at Yurcak Field in Piscataway, NJ

Scoring Summary
SBFC: 1-0-1
CRS: 1-0-1

15′ CRS Leon (Gilliland)
36′ SBFC Kerr

SBFC – Cameron, Rampone, Foord, Haagsma (Stanton-77), Cutshall, O’Hara, Levin, Lytle (Killion-56), Freels, Kerr, Nadim (Filigno-84)
Substitutes Not Used: Bledsoe, Goodson

CRS: Dalton, Gilliland (Lominicki-46), Johnston, Johnson, Quon, Colaprico, Chalupny (Huerta-82), DiBernardo, Hoy, Leon (Mautz-69), Press
Substitutes Not Used: LeBlanc, Hemmings, Tancredi, Walls

Misconduct Summary:
64 CRS L.Chalupny (Yellow Card)

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