You are currently browsing the monthly archive for May 2012.

If you’ve been keeping track of the Boston Breakers this seasons, you may have been hard pressed to find similarities between last night’s game against Wester New York Flash and their wins to date. Although the outcome would end the same with a win, the road taken, the roster of players used, and the fashion to get there was much different.

“I think it’s a sign of a good team that we’ve won in many different ways.” Katie Schoepfer said “We’ve had blowouts, we’ve had teams that were a lot more physical, we’ve had teams that were a lot more organized.”

Control of the game swung back and forth as each team would have opportunities to take over. The Breakers took the lead with the only score in the first half from Schoepfer in the 33rd minute. The Flash would strike next in the first five minutes of the second half with a goal by Angela Salem in the 49th minute. The Breakers would bounce back with Schoepfer’s PK make in the 54th minute. Schoepfer would get the hat trick in the 67th minute when she got her toe on a ball that came loose off Kyah Simon’s possession in the box. The Flash returned the favor by netting their second in the 82nd minute, the score came from Flash forward Adriana. The score of the game would stay at 3 – 2 as the Breakers held on for the win.

The Breakers missed the play of Aussie Tameka Butts in the midfield, but were able to compensate for it with the return of two U.S. Women’s National Team U-23 players Bianca D’Agostino and  Amanda DaCosta. Those weren’t the only roster changes as Elli Reed rejoined the team from the U-23 camp as well and Melissa Henderson joined the team on Thursday driving from the University of Notre Dame.

Other WPSL action this weekend: ASA Chesapeake Charge get their first win of the season beating the Philadelphia Fever by the score of 3 – 2.

Next week in WPSL: The games for the week start on Thursday, May 31st with the Fever visiting the Fury. The Fury hope to bounce back from their first loss of the season. The Fever are still looking for their first win of the season. On Friday, June 1st the Breakers look to continue their winning streak against last place FC Indiana. This is the first of two road games this week for the Breakers. The Saturday, June 2nd game will feature the Fever against the Mutiny. The Mutiny hope to keep their two game unbeaten streak alive versus the Fever in front of their home crowd. Sunday, June 3rd is a double feature: In the early game the Breakers travel to the windy city to take on the 2nd place Red Stars and in the second game the supremacy of the State of New York will be decided as the Flash meet the Fury.

This week’s WPSL action kicked off on Wednesday, May 23rd pitting the Boston Breakers against the New York Fury. They  would battle for the top spot in the standings as they came into the game tied for 1st place.

The Breakers would strike first with a goal in the 10th minute, Tameka Butt would tally her second score of the season assisted by Courtney Jones. Butt is tied for second on the team in goals with Australian teammate Kyah Simon at two. Jones is tied for first on the team in assists with Simon at two. The eventual game winner by Katie Schoepfer came in the 19th minute off an assist from Simon. Schoepfer leads the team with threes goals, scoring in each game played.

The Breakers continue to score at a blistering rate to start their games, leaving the eventual outcome pretty much decided by half time. In all their games this season, the Breakers have scored 89% (8 of 9) of their goals in the first half. When the offense is stalled, the defense and goal keeping keep the game deceidedly in the Breakers favor with the league’s second best  GAA of 0.67.

In the second half, The Fury would show why they are a top team in the league by making the game interesting. Merritt Mathias would net her fourth goal of the season in the 66th minute to put the Fury on the scoreboard. Mathias leads the Fury in goals and is atop the league in goals and points.

The Breakers would get the road win and add to their league best record of 3 – 0.

Other WPSL action this week: On Friday, May 25th the Chicago Red Stars visited FC Indiana and got their second win on the season. The Red Stars record of 2 – 0 is good enough for second best in the league. Both wins have come at the expense of FC Indiana. The Breakers host former WPS rival Western New York Flash on Saturday, May 26th at Dilboy Stadium in Somerville, MA at 6pm ET. ASA Chesapeake Charge and the Philadelphia Fever look for their first wins of the season as they face off in the last game of the weekend on Sunday, May 27th. The Fury next play on Thursday, May 31st at home against the Fever.

On Friday, May 18th WPS made two announcements. One was that the pending legal battle between the league and magicJack owner Dan Borislow was settled out of court. This news should have put any WPS fan in a good mood and fill them with hope of the league’s return. The second announcement, though expected, left no doubt in the fan’s mind that it wouldn’t return. In the second press release , the board of governors decided to suspend all league operations indefinitely.

This week’s chat will explore the larger meaning of the WPS finale.

Q1: WPS Lawsuit Settlement

  • Was this the sole reason for the suspension of league operations, a small part of it, or no part at all? Why or why not?
  • Are there any winners in this settlement? Who? Why or why not?
  • Was Facebook the best communication medium to use for this announcement? Why or why not?

Q2: WPS Suspends All League Operations

  • Did this announcement catch you off guard? In what ways? Why or why not?
  • What impact did WPS have on the landscape of women’s professional soccer in the U.S.A.?
  • Was Facebook the best communication medium to use for this announcement? Why or why not?

Q3: Women’s Professional Soccer

  • What pressures are now on the two major professional leagues?

Join us on Monday at 8pm ET to throw your thoughts into the mix. Just log on to TwitterTweetchat, or Tweetgrid, and use the #WPSchat tag.

The venue: Dilboy Stadium in Somerville, MA.

The occasion: Boston Breakers home opener.

Anyone who has ever been a fan knows that supporting your team is like a relationship. There are ups and downs, moments of indescribable joy and heartache. On this evening, both the Boston Breakers and their new fans at Dilboy stadium entered into a commitment – no matter what happened during the first home game of the season, it would be gotten through together.

One of the sayings before entering into a life long commitment is to bring something new, something old, something borrowed, and something blue.

Let’s check the list:

Something new: the stadium and league. Got that covered, next.

Something old: The Boston Breakers organization, which has survived the WUSA and WPS.

Something borrowed: Players from both the U.S. Women’s National Team and the Australian National Team

Something blue: Obvious, isn’t it? Breakers blue!

The home opener went as every fan and team dreams the night would with a win. The Breakers defeated FC Indiana by a score of 4 – 1 in front of a crowd of 2,312 fans.

“We didn’t know what we were going to expect tonight with FC Indiana, so we had to be prepared for anything. But I think the most exciting thing is the new stadium, a new city, and a great sellout crowd that we heard the whole game,” captain Leslie Osborne said. “Just to be back in a Breakers uniform and playing again in front of our fans and to get a win for them and score some goals, it’s a good day.”

The Breakers struck first in the 9th minute when Katie Schoepfer netted the rebound of Cat Whitehill’s blistering shot. The night didn’t go without incident as FC Indiana evened the score in the 11th minute. Nadia Libertin received a ball from Sophia Batard and chipped a shot over Breakers goal keeper Alice Binns for the score.

Australian National Team star Kyah Simon would score the next two goals for the Breakers. Her first would break the tie giving the Breakers the lead in the 13th minute. Former Boston University star Jessica Luscinski would assist on the second goal adding to her brilliant play thus far in the season.

“I am pleased to get the two goals, but I think I should’ve had a few more. But we stuck in there against a hard opponent to play,” Simon said. “It was one of those games where you had to finish your chances when you can.”

Tameka Butt’s hard play in the game would earn her the game’s last goal. In the 57th minute, she would connect on a give and go with Simon for the goal.

“It was good getting my first goal for the Breakers. It’ll always be a memorable one, and my teammate from Australia set me up, so it was a good goal to get” Butt said.

The team performed well, the offense was scoring goals and the defense limited scores and scoring opportunities. Breakers Head Coach Lisa Cole had this to say of the night “They were a little more physical than I thought they’d be, but we decided to come out and play our game and get the result we’d be happy with.”

If the home opener is any sign of the marriage to be between the Breakers team and fan, it appears it will be a happy one!

Click here for more information on the game.

For video of the game visit the Boston Breakers YouTube channel.

In opening play for both teams, the New York Fury quelled the New England Mutiny by a score of 5 -1.

The Fury attack in the first half was powered by Merritt Mattias. Mattias tallied a hat trick and an assist by the end of the first half. The Fury took the lead in 7th minute of play on Mattias’s first goal and didn’t look back. Her next points came in the form of an assist on Jasmyne Spencer’s score in the 14th minute. The second of her three goals came in 25th minute assisted by Tina DiMartino. Her last goal was recorded in the 42nd minute giving the Fury a 4 – 0 halftime lead. Meghan Lenczyk added one more for The Fury in the 74th minute.

Though the Fury came out  with the win, the Mutiny settled down in the second half making for more even play.  After the Fury’s last score, the Mutiny matched it when Tiya Gallegos put-in off the rebound of a hard shot by Kate Howarth. The team was playing with a depleted roster because some players were off for national team duty.  New York Fury head coach Paul Riley spoke about the depleted roster of the Mutiny, “I think the Mutiny when they get they’re players back will be a lot better. It’s a difficult scenario.”

The game was a tale of two halves for both teams. Riley had this to say on his team’s play, “It was a very good 45 minutes, and I think with another few weeks of hard training, we will be able to put in a full 90 minutes.” New England Mutiny head coach Tony Horta had this comment after the game, “I thought the second half with the information we gave [the team], they took it well. We made some adjustments and the game was even. So, if you take the first half away and you evaluate the second half, it was an even match.”

The Mutiny’s next game is at home on Saturday, May 19th against ASA Chesapeake Charge. The New York Fury travel Rochester, NY for a game against Western New York Flash on Saturday, May 19th.

The wait is over! Women’s soccer is back in action.

WPSL Elite and USL W-League opened their seasons this weekend. Fans now have two leagues to follow, and I say the more the merrier.  Six of the eight teams took to the field for the WPSL and five matches were slotted for the USL W-League opening weekends. Did I mention that there was also a bonus game– an inter-league exhibition Boston Breakers vs. DC United Women? With all these games this weekend, chances are that you already have “your” team in one of the two leagues and followed their play.

Tonight’s chat will look to get your thoughts on the opening weekend for both leagues.

Q1: WPSL Opening Weekend

  • The average goal differential for the winners on the weekend was a + 3.33. Is there a disparity between the teams? Why or why not?
  • The winners all have links to WPS. Is the line of disparity drawn by former WPS team and former WPSL team? What is the reason?
  • The opening weekend was historic with the first goal, first assist, first win, first shutout, and first hat trick. What was your favorite?

Q2: USL W-League Opening Weekend

  • The live streaming of the Pali Blues game was a big hit on twitter. Does this help expand the reach of the league and the teams to their fans? In what ways?
  • If some teams in the league have live feeds of their games and others don’t. How does this benefit/impair the league and the teams?
  • The opening weekend featured nine of the thirty teams, a teaser of what is to come once the league is in full swing. Are you looking forward to next weekend’s games where each day is action packed?

Q3: Bonus Game – Boston Breakers vs. DC United Women

  • Building bridges: would you like to see more inter-league play?

Join us on Monday at 8pm ET to throw your thoughts into the mix. Just log on to TwitterTweetchat, or Tweetgrid, and use the #WPSchat tag.

Before her Boston Breakers debut, the Australian striker Kyah Simon made a promise to her mother for Mother’s Day. “I promised her one for Mother’s Day,” Simon said. “It was her request. She said, “Don’t make a promise you can’t keep.’”

On this day, Breakers fans are grateful for two things: the time difference of the states and Australia (which put game day on Mother’s Day over there) and the bond between mother and child (in particular that of Simon and her mom.)

Simon delivered on her promise with a stellar performance. She created multiple opportunities to score, and even netted one in the 56th minute.  This goal was the game winner for the Breakers as they defeated DC United Women by a score of 1 – 0.

This gave the Breakers two wins in as many games. Although this was exhibition play so it won’t count towards WPSL league play and stats, Breakers fans will be wishing it could be Mother’s Day every game day.

This one is for Kyah, her mom, and mom’s across all time zones – Happy Mother’s Day!

The first match of the WPSL Elite league’s inaugural season featured the Boston Breakers visiting the ASA Chesapeake Charge. The Breakers netted three goals in the first twenty minutes to secure the win while the defense and goal keeper Alice Binns kept the clean sheet by not letting in a single goal.

The three goals were scored by Veronica Napoli, Jessica Luscinski, and Katie Schoepfer. The first goal was scored by Napoli in the 4th minute of the game with an assist by former Tar Heel Courtney Jones. The two made history by recording the first goal and assist of WPSL Elite league. The next two goals came 10 minutes later and with in two minutes of each other. This time, Napoli was on the other side of the score assisting Schoepfer. Boston University star Jessica Luscinski scored the final goal of the match, assisted by captain Leslie Osborne.

The defense was able to make history in the game as well. The Breakers goal keeper Alice Binns recorded the first shutout of WPSL Elite league. This couldn’t have been accomplished without support from the Breakers’ back line consisting of Cat Whitehill, Taryn Hemmings, Elli Reed, and Courtney Jones.

Breakers head coach Lisa Cole had these thoughts on the team’s performance. “I liked how we started, going out right away and scoring goals,” Cole continued “Overall, I was excited about the team’s first win. I was pleased with the back line. They were solid.” When asked about the two game road trip to the nation’s capital, Cole said “It’s an important road trip for us, I want to get a ’W’ in our first WPSL Elite game, and DC United is a good team, so we get to be tested right away.”

Cole got the ‘W’ that she wanted. Let’s hope the Breakers can come out with another win in their second game against DC United. The Breakers stay in Maryland to play an exhibition versus USL W-League team DC United on Saturday, May 12th at 6 p.m. ET before heading home to Boston for their home opener versus FC Indiana Friday, May 18th at 7 p.m. ET.

Women’s soccer is cranking up this week. WPSL Elite and USL W-League open their seasons and the U-17 CONCACAF Women’s Championship is being played. The WSPL season opener will feature the Boston Breakers visiting ASA Chesapeake Charge on Thursday, May 10th. This Friday, the USL W-League will kick off as VSI Tampa Flames take on the Charlotte Lady Eagles in Charlotte, N.C. Then on May 7th the national teams in the U-17 CONCACAF tournament will play their final group games and on May 12th a champion will be crowned.

Tonight’s chat is a smorgasbord; try a little bit of this and a little bit of that. From the U-17 CONCACAF tournament to the start of the WPSL and USL W-League seasons, there is plenty here to satisfy even the hungriest women’s soccer fan.

Q1: U-17 CONCACAF Women’s Championship

  • The US has dominated play in their group thus far, is there a team that could knock them off?
  • Canada has dominated play in their group, should we expect a Canada vs. US final?
  •  Who could be the underdog in the playoff? Why?

Q2: WPSL Elite Opening Week & Season

  • Will you be following the opening week and season?
  • How will you be joining the action (going to games, following online, etc)?
  • Have you chosen a team to cheer for? What team? Why them?

Q3: USL W-League Opening Week & Season

  • Will you be following the opening week and season?
  • How will you be joining the action (going to games, following online, etc)?
  • Have you chosen a team to cheer for? What team? Why them?

Join us on Monday at 8pm ET to throw your thoughts into the mix. Just log on to TwitterTweetchat, or Tweetgrid, and use the #WPSchat tag.

If you happened to be in terminal B at Logan International Airport Thursday night, you may have notice an unusual feeling in the air like something big was about to happen. And it did– with the arrival of Kyah Simon and Tameka Butt, the two Breakers Australian internationals.

The two young, rising Matilda stars are personable, lively, and just plain nice. After 24 hours filled with travel and claiming their luggage, they took a moment for pictures and to answer some questions from Pitch Side View.

How was your trip?

Almost in unison, they both say “Long” with a good laugh. Tameka: “It is good to finally arrive in Boston after a long flight.”

What is it like to finally arrive in Boston?

Tameka: “It is a bit cold, but really exciting. Can’t wait to meet the girls [the Breakers] and get out on the pitch.”

What are you looking forward to the most?

Kyah: “Getting out on the training pitch with the girls, finally getting a feel for American style of football. Being coached by two female coaches it’s something that I’ve never experienced, and I don’t think Tameka has either.”

Who are you most looking forward to playing with?

Kyah: “It’s a matter of finally getting to training and seeing which players you work off. Hopefully the whole team gels as a whole, and you play really well together. You won’t know until you finally get on the field and give it a go.”

What are your goals for the team and yourself?

Tameka: “I hope we win the play offs. For myself, to be able to fit into a team. It’s a different football culture over here to Australia.”

Kyah: “To get to the playoffs as well. Obviously, we’re both competitive, and we want to win.  Meeting new friends as well as teammates. Hopefully that good relationship off the pitch can really pay off on the pitch.”

What will you miss most about home?

Both Tameka and Kyah will miss their “family and friends” and Tameka quickly adds “the beach” to the list.

What are you looking forward to doing in Boston and the States?

Tameka: “We were just talking about that and we’ve got to go to the baseball, basketball, hockey. We want to see that all the different sports we don’t have at home.”

Kyah: “Hopefully getting our way to New York at some stage and seeing a few of the other big cities.”

Tameka: “We’re both 21 this year, so we are looking forward to a trip to Las Vegas.”

A special thanks to Kyah and Tameka for sitting down to do this interview after their flight and long day. Click here for pictures of the session (photos copyright Courtney Sacco).

Biographies:

Kyah Simon – Kyah is the superstar of the future for the Australian National Team. She debuted in the national team program with the under 15 team. She scored the winning PK that gave the Matildas the 2010 AFC Women’s Asia cup. In the 2011 World Cup she lead the team in scoring with 2 goals in the tournament.

Tameka Butt – Tameka captained the under 17 Australian women’s national team from 2007 to 2009. She scored the equalizer in the league finals game for her former club the Brisbane Roar of the Australian W-League before they succumb to a goal against by the eventual champions Canberra United.

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