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05/24/2013 10:32 AM -

The Western New York Flash picked up its third-straight win on a chilly Friday night, defeating the Chicago Red Stars 2-1 in front of 3,152 fans at Sahlen’s Stadium. The Flash will now take to the road with a 3-2-1 record (10 points).  The team will play its next four games away from home before returning to Rochester on June 23rd.

The Red Stars remain winless as they now drop to 0-4-2 (2 points) on the season.

Defender Brittany Taylor, who can typically be seen anchoring the Flash defense, proved to be the biggest offensive threat for WNY on Friday as she assisted on both Flash markers.

After a scoreless first half, the visitors were the first to strike with Lori Chalupny scoring her second goal of the year.  In the 52nd minute, Chalupny chased down a through ball from Jessica McDonald and struck with a low shot to the right side netting.

Just when the Red Stars thought they had broken through, the Flash responded two minutes later.  Near the right flag, Samantha Kerr sent a soft drop pass to Brittany Taylor near the corner of the box.  The defender then sent a high, hanging ball toward the Chicago net that found the head of none other than Abby Wambach.

Playing for the trap, the Red Stars were looking for an offside call but the lofty feed allowed Wambach to time her run behind the defense and score uncontested.

The Flash kept the foot on the gas and put together a strong offensive possession that ultimately resulted in a goal for the home team.  In the 65th minute, Kerr made her way to the right end line and sent a cross in for Carli Lloyd who appeared to be in prime position to pickup her first goal in a Flash uniform.  But Julianne Sitch was able to head the ball over the net and out for a WNY corner.

It was on the ensuing set piece that the home team went ahead, as captain McCall Zerboni netted her first goal of the year.  Adriana’s corner was flicked forward off the head of Taylor, finding Zerboni who connected with her head as well.  It was also Taylor’s second assist of the game.

Zerboni nearly scored in the 23rd minute when she received a touch pass from Wambach 12 yards out, but her shot went wide to the right.

Just before the second goal, the Flash were close to gaining the lead when Taylor sent a midfield free kick to the head of Wambach who flicked on towards the net.  Although it went to the Red Stars Lauren Fowlkes, she faltered the header and Chicago’s Taylor Vancil was forced to make a diving save.

Vancil, who earned her first career start in place of injured Canadian international Erin McLeod, kept the slate clean in the first half with four of her five saves.  In the 36th minute, Kerr used a nifty no-look pass to Alex Sahlen on an overlapping run on the right side.  The defender sent a cross close to the net, forcing Vancil to tip the ball out for a corner kick.

After that corner kick, the Flash were able to draw two more on the same offensive series with the third and final ending with a short corner from Lloyd.  At the right flag, Lloyd quickly passed the ball to Adriana who fed the midfielder back with a give-and-go.  Lloyd was able to break through the defense and fire a hard shot through a crowd of Red Stars, but Vancil dove right to punch the attempt away.

Five minutes later, Vancil denied another Flash attempt when Taylor sent Adriana in with a chip over the backline.  With the Spaniard rushing quickly, Vancil came off her line and barely got her fingertips on Adriana’s lofting shot that would have cleared the keeper’s height and made the game 1-0.

Earning her first start in a Flash uniform, Lloyd was hungry for her first score and had a solid opportunity in each half.  In the first, Lloyd took a free kick just outside the box after Wambach drew a foul.  However, her low strike was just wide of the right post.

Then, in the second half, Lloyd worked for a shot that went through a Chicago defender’s legs and ricocheted off Sitch.  The ball nearly went in the net but hit the left post instead.

Sarah Huffman saw the field for the first time as she entered as a 77th minute substitute and nearly scored to make the game 3-1.  On the left side, Wambach was able to sprawl for a free ball and sent a lunging pass over to Huffman in the box.  After Vancil missed a sliding attempt at the ball, Huffman was unable to get a clean shot away with the Chicago defense recovering just in time to end the chance.

The Flash handedly outshot the Red Stars 18-7, with 11 coming in the first half and only two of Chicago’s going on target.

Lloyd led the team with six shots, while Zerboni had four.  Both team committed 14 fouls with Chicago having a slight 10-8 advantage in corner kicks.

The Flash will head to the road for its next four games but will wait 13 days before the next contest.  Western New York next faces the Boston Breakers on June 5th at 7:00 p.m. at Dilboy Stadium.


Chicago (0-4-2) 0 1 1
Western New York (3-2-1)   0 2



1 52 Chicago Lori Chulupny Jessica McDonald
2 54 Western New York Abby Wambach Brittany Taylor
3 65 Western New York McCall Zerboni Brittany Taylor



43 Chicago 17 Lori Chulupny Yellow Card Reckless Foul


Western New York 10 Carli Lloyd Yellow Card Reckless Foul



69 Chicago #9 Maribel Dominguez

#3Ella Masar

77 Western New York #4 Samantha Kerr #14 Sarah Huffman
78 Chicago #19 Julianne Sitch #6 Zakiya Bywaters
87 Chicago #15 Lauren Fowlkes #5 Carmelina Moscato
87 Western New York #8 Adriana Martin #17 Veronica Perez


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