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07/04/2013 10:43 AM -

The Western New York Flash saw their nine-game unbeaten streak come to an end on Thursday, falling 1-0 to the Chicago Red Stars at Benedictine University.  It was the first time the Flash have lost a game since April 27th when the team fell 2-1 to the Boston Breakers.

Chicago captain Lori Chalupny scored the lone goal of the match, beating Western New York goalkeeper Adrianna Franch in the 58th minute on what would prove to be the game-deciding goal.

From the left side, Taryn Hemmings sent a cross into the six-yard box finding Inka Grings who got low for a header.  That attempt appeared to be stopped by Franch, but the ball came loose on the goalie’s dive to the right and Chalupny was in position to put her team ahead with the rebound goal.

It was one of six shots the Red Stars had in the half, as they held the Flash without a shot in the second leg en route to the win.

Over the first 45 minutes, the Flash put six shots at the net but only one of them was on target, as the two teams would head into the locker room knotted at 0-0.  Carli Lloyd, the NWSL Player of the Week, was involved in a number of the Flash’s early opportunities, but unfortunately was unable to breakthrough.

In the seventh minute, Lloyd had the first real chance for the team with a free kick from about 25-yards out.  Standing over the set piece with McCall Zerboni, Lloyd drove a shot past the wall that caromed off the crossbar.

Six minutes later, another free kick resulted in Lloyd with a chance inside the box.  In the defensive half, Katherine Reynolds sent a long kick to the head of Abby Wambach who flicked on to her USWNT teammate.  But Lloyd was unable to get over the bouncing ball and fired high.

In the 17th minute, Wambach looked for Sarah Huffman with a light chip into the box but Erin McLeod was able to stop Huffman’s diving header attempt.  Later in the half, Wambach would go on to connect on a booming free kick from defender Brittany Taylor but her aerial effort went just wide to the right.

The goalkeeper fought off another near connection between the two Flash players in the 45th minute when Taylor sent a long ball into the 18-yard box.  Coming to the top of the box, McLeod leaped up to grab the ball with it nearly going through her fingertips.  However, the Canadian international was able to hold on to the ball that would have otherwise found a wide-open Wambach waiting on the other end.

The Flash defense had a close call in the 23rd minute as well, when Estelle Johnson had to retreat to collect a ball that bounced high over her head.  Running toward her own goal, Johnson was pressured from Grings and was just able to get a toe on the ball to pass back to Franch.  Franch had to quickly dance to the left to avoid the oncoming Grings but ultimately cleared the danger.

Near the start of the second half, Johnson made a strong defensive play after Lloyd was dispossessed near the top of the Red Stars box.  The ball went out to Maribel Dominguez who traveled the length of the field, working a 2-on-2 with Grings against Taylor and Johnson.  Dominguez sent a slow feed past Taylor to Grings, but Johnson was able to block the shot.

Late in the game the Flash defense came up with a few more solid stops to keep it a one-goal game as the offense searched for the equalizer.  In the 74th minute, Chalupny was able to avoid a slide tackle from Johnson on the right side, setting up a 2-on-1 with Grings close to the net.  Facing Taylor, Chalupny tried to feed inside to a wide-open Grings, but Taylor was able to read the pass and cut the ball off.

In the 80th, Dominguez got a pass in the slot but was bumped off the ball at the last minute by Alex Sahlen. The chance didn’t end there though, as Chalupny got the ball on the left side and sent it across where Franch punched it out, going to the feet of Julianne Sitch.  Sitch took the shot from just outside the box but it went off Taylor and out of bounds.

Coming off the bench in the 59th minute, Australian international Samantha Kerr had perhaps the best chance of the second half for the Flash.  Just one minute into her playing time, Kerr was sent running toward the goal. The Matilda gave herself a breakaway opportunity with a header pass to herself, but McLeod was able to stop the chance when she came out and collided with Kerr.  It was a hard collision for both players, resulting in athletic trainers checking on both Kerr and McLeod, but they would both remain in the game.

With just one shot on goal over the 90 minutes (Huffman’s 17th minute header), the Flash were unable to level the game and picked up their second road loss.

The Flash (6-3-4, 22 points) remain in fourth place in the NWSL and travel to play FC Kansas City on Sunday at 4:10 p.m. ET.  The Blues are within arm’s reach of the Flash, currently holding third place in the league with just more two points. 



1 2 F
Western New York (6-3-4) 0 0 0
Chicago (4-6-3) 0 1



Goal Time Team Goal Scorer Assist
1 58 Chicago Lori Chalupny  
Cautions and Ejections        
Time Team ## Player Card Reason
14 Chicago 11 Rachel Quon Yellow Card Reckless Foul


Time Team Out In
59 Western New York #17 Veronica Perez #4 Samantha Kerr
69 Western New York #14 Sarah Huffman #23 Jodi-Ann Robinson
75 Western New York #7 McCall Zerboni #9 Ingrid Wells
83 Chicago #9 Maribel Dominguez #4 Alyssa Mautz
93+ Chicago #12 Lesli Osborne #18 Jackie Santacaterina


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