05/06/2016 3:46 PM
The Western New York Flash (1-2-0) take on Sky Blue FC (1-1-1) on Saturday, May 7 at 7:00 p.m. at Yurack Field in Picataway, N.J.
The Flash are looking for their second win on the season, coming off of their home opener against the undefeated Washington Spirit where the Flash took 16 shots and forced 11 corner kicks, while holding the Spirit to only seven shots and two corners.
Washington opened scoring early in the game when forward Crystal Dunn found Diana Matheson in the fourth minute. The Flash retaliated with strong offensive pressure and play, having a multitude of opportunities including a moment where midfielder Halimatu Ayinde saw an open Spirit net but put it high and a Sam Mewis rocket from almost 35 yards out.
In the second half, Washington took advantage of some favorable calls. Matheson converted from the spot followed by a well taken free kick finished by Spirit forward Katie Stengel. The Flash couldn’t get on the board, with Mewis hitting the post on a penalty and Taylor Smith being denied by the frame as well only minutes later.
“Obviously we were disappointed with the result of last week,” captain Abby Erceg mentioned, “but parts of our performance are slowly starting to take shape. We feel that we have improve game-to-game – which is important – but we have just been missing a couple of final touches. If we can tidy that up, we are looking sharp.”
Head coach Paul Riley seems optimistic about the team, noting that the “groups are starting to really develop chemistry,” including center backs Erceg and Abby Dahlkemper, but the team is still missing some key components.
“Abby Squared have proved to be our backbone so far,” said Riley, “and the partnership of Sam Mewis and Alanna Kennedy in the midfield will bear fruits in the long term. Finding the right blend of power, speed, creativity and finishing in the final third has been our biggest challenge.”
The team has no problem creating opportunities and putting pressure on team’s in their own half. Western New York currently leads the league in both shots (47) and corner kicks (21) so far this season. The next step for Riley and his team in order to produce winning results? Finishing.
“Overall we are pleased with the effort and ability of the team to create chances,” Riley mentioned. “Obviously the final step of scoring goals is important, and we have been working diligently to get it right. But the squad is excited to get back on the pitch and improve on last week.”
Sky Blue FC is coming off a 0-0 draw with Houston Dash. Sky Blue FC spent most of the match defending but allowed the Dash to take 20 shots, while only taking 6 themselves. Goalkeeper Caroline Stanley came up with some big saves to help her team walk away with a point.
The Western New York Flash will travel to Orlando next to take on Alex Morgan and the new Orlando Pride on Saturday, May 14 at Camping World Stadium at 7:00 p.m.
The Flash return home on Saturday, May 21, when they host Sky Blue FC at Sahlen’s Stadium at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are available at wnyflash.com/tickets.
Tickets for the Western New York Flash’s home opener on Saturday, May 21 at Sahlen’s Stadium at 7:00 p.m. are available at wnyflash.com/tickets.