Sky Blue Finishes Preseason With Fourth Straight Win

courtesy Sky Blue FC, Dennis Schneidler

by Chris Henderson
NWSL Beatwriter

Sky Blue FC completed its unblemished preseason run with a 2-0 victory over Rutgers on Sunday.

Katy Freels’ free kick fizzer in the 14th minute and trialist Theresa Diederich’s strike in the 71st were enough to see off the local college side. Goalkeeper Aubrey Bledsoe got her first start for Sky Blue, earning a clean sheet. Bledsoe and her competition for the permanent starting spot, veteran Brittany Cameron, did not allow a goal in any of the four preseason games the team played this Spring.

Freels scored her third goal of the preseason and combined well again with midfield partner rookie Sarah Killion. For Diederich, the goal was her first and may seal her place on the team. She earned her first start of the preseason as she and fellow rookie Lo’eau LaBonta replaced star Nadia Nadim and defender Lindsi Cutshall.

“We came out a little flat and were not able to come up with the correct answers right away,” said head coach Jim Gabarra. “In the second half, we began to apply more pressure and pushed them back. We did a good job of creating chances, but we were not nearly good enough in the final third, which is why we were only able to score a couple of goals.”

Sky Blue’s next game is its season opener away to FC Kansas City on April 12.