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The Breakers season has been much like a promising boxers career; training hard to be in the best condition, receiving the spotlight as a top professional team, and delivering on those high expectations even through adversity.

In this important bout, the Breakers would deliver a PO (Pink Out) to their opponent the Philadelphia Fever.

The stage: Dilboy Stadium in Somerville set the stage for a fun and exciting game. The Breakers were wearing pink kits in support of Project Pink, a Puma charity campaign that raises awareness and funds to aid in the fight against breast cancer. The pink jerseys worn by the players were auctioned during the game and raised over $2,800 which will go to Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. The game marked their 2012 season home finale with yet another sold-out crowd in attendance to cheer them to victory.

The weigh-in: The Breakers were the overwhelming favorites to win the game. Coming into the match, the Breakers were tied for 1st in the league standings and the Fever were tied for last. But given their recent tough loss against the New England Mutiny, would they be able to bounce back?

The fight: Like any top fighter with a bad taste in their mouth from the last bout, the Breakers came out fast and furious. The Breakers midfielder Bianca D’Agostino opened-up the onslaught of offensive blows with a shot in the 4th minute that rattled the goal. From that point on, the Breakers were going for the PO on each and every shot. Fever goal keeper Michelle Dalton would fend off stellar shots from Cat Whitehill, Katie Schoepfer, Jessica Luscinski and Melissa Henderson before conceding to Schoepfer on a penalty kick in the 13th minute. D’Agostino, who turned in her best performance of the season, kept the pressure on Dalton with great shot selection, power, and accuracy. Dalton gave in once more to the offensive blitz when Courtney Jones netted her second goal of the season off a pass from Breakers captain Leslie Osborne.

As any top fighter will tell you, you need a great defense to go with your offense. The Breakers keeping and defense recorded their sixth shutout of the season. The Breakers back line of Whitehill, Taryn Hemmings, Elli Reed, and Julie King held their ground, limiting the work for goal keeper Alejandra Velasco.  Velasco only had to save one shot to get her first shutout of the season.  The Breakers out shot the Fever 23 – 1 on the game and put almost half of those on goal.

The Fever’s strategy was to pack-in the defense and limit the damage of the Breakers blows. They were successful in holding the Breakers high-octane offense to 2 goals and goal to shot percentage of just under 10% at 9%. The strategy, while effective on the defensive end, saw the offense struggle. They only tested the Breakers once which Velasco saved.

The Breakers play their final game of the 2012 campaign away vs. the Western New York Flash on Sunday, July 22nd at 4pm ET at Sahlen Stadium. The game will determine playoff seeding as the Breakers and Flash are tied for 1st with 30 points and the Chicago Red Stars are in 2nd with 27 points and two games to play.

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The Boston Breakers went into their match versus in-state rival the New England Mutiny on a five game winning streak. With their win over the ASA Chesapeake from the previous night fresh in mind, the Breakers had momentum, aptitude, and durability going for them.

Momentum: Looking at the record, the Breakers were going into last night’s match on a roll. The Breakers were winners of five straight, and won the previous match-up between the two teams. Since their loss to now top-seeded Chicago Red Stars, the Breakers have beat up the competition. In those five wins they recorded 3 shutouts and  outscored their opponents 11 – 4. In the previous match the Breakers outlasted the Mutiny winning by a score of 4 – 2.

Aptitude: The Breakers have multiple players in the top of the league leaders for points, goals, and assists. The team’s roster includes Kyah Simon, Katie Schoepfer, and Courtney Jones. Simon is the league best in scoring and points; Schoepfer ranks in the top 3 league-wide in scores, assists, and points; Jones leads the league in assists. With skill like this on the team, it’s easy to see how the Breakers were top of the league going into last night’s game.

Durability: The Breakers are known throughout the league for being an incredibly fit team, for keeping the pressure on all game, and for scoring  late in the second half of games. If any WPSL Elite team could accomplish the physically taxing task of winning games on back to back nights, it would be the Breakers. Right?

For 90 plus minutes in last night’s game against the Mutiny, the Breakers looked as though they would pull it off.  Simon scored in the 47th minute, and the team had plenty of opportunities to net another if it wasn’t for the stellar play of Mutiny GK Vicki Alonzo. What the Breakers didn’t plan for was the ace up the Mutiny’s sleeve: Resilience.

Resilience: The Mutiny proved that staying in the game and bouncing back are the key to winning against this formidable team. This would ultimately be the story of the night.

The Mutiny would prove their resiliency by scoring two goals in stoppage time to get the all-important win, thereby keeping their playoff dreams alive. The equalizer came off the foot of the team’s recent signing and former Breaker Tiffany Weimer. Minutes later the game-winner sailed past the outstretched hands of Breakers GK Alice Binns by Mutiny substitute Taleen Dimirdjian. Another Mutiny substitute for the game Rebecca Mays would set-up Dimirdjian for the goal.

The Mutiny celebrated their victory with the 1,031 fans in attendance, while the Breakers felt as though they let three points get away.

New England Mutiny – Box score/recap

Boston Breakers – Box score/recap

The Breakers will look to show their resiliency when they return to action in their next match on July 14th against the Philadelphia Fever at Dilboy Stadium in Somerville, MA. It will be Puma “Project Pink” night at Dilboy. The players will be wearing pink jerseys to raise awareness for breast cancer. The jerseys will be auctioned off at the end of the game to raise funds for a cancer charity to help find a cure.

In the rematch of the regular season, the New England Mutiny defended their home field and beat the Philadelphia Fever 2 – 1. With the win, the Mutiny into third place in the WPSL Elite league standings. The Fever’s struggle to find a way to win continue as they lose another close one.

The Fever would strike first in the 11th minute as Myriam Bouchard took advantage of a Mutiny turnover and rocketed a shot past the hands of Mutiny goal keeper Vikki Alonzo. The Mutiny fought back and equalized in the 22nd minute when Kate Howarth netted a ball from Vicki DiMartino. The half would end with the score knotted at 1 -1.

In the previous match, the teams played to a draw. At the half with the score even at 1 – 1, this game was heading in the same direction. The difference maker was Morgan Andrews who did not play in the first game but controlled this game in the midfield for the Mutiny. Andrews placed a perfect ball over the defense to Kate Howarth on the wing who crossed it to Becca Mays for the game winner in the 82nd minute.

Post-Match Interview: Mutiny Midfielder Morgan Andrews –

Post-Match Interview: Mutiny Interim Head Coach Chris Legates – 

Just one game from their roller-coaster match against the Western New York Flash, the Breakers got back to normal by dominating FC Indiana. The high-octane offense put away 4 goals, matching their season high which incidentally came against the same FC Indiana team. Not to be outdone, the Breakers defense also put in a solid performance. Lead by goal keeper Alice Binns, they recorded another shutout for the season.

The Breakers topped FC Indiana by a final score of 4 – 0, keeping their pursuit of a perfect season alive. They maintain their position atop the league standings with a 6 point lead over the New York Fury. Scoring for the game opened with a goal in the 30th minute by Bianca D’Agostino assisted by team captain Leslie Osborne. This was D’Agostino’s first goal as Breaker. The next two goals came from WPSL league leading goal scorer Katie Schoepfer, the first in the 34th minute assisted by defender Julie King and the second assisted by former UNC Tar Heel standout Courtney Jones. The final tally for the game came in the 78th minute, unassisted off the foot of Australian international Kyah Simon. This gives Simon three goals for the season.

For more information on the game click here. The Breakers (5 – 0) next face the Chicago Red Stars Sunday, June 3rd in Chicago at 5pm ET.

After five games played this season, FC Indiana are still in search of their first win. Their closest chances thus far have been against the Red Stars, when the margin of victory was two goals in each game. FC Indiana’s next chance for a win is at home against the ASA Chesapeake Charge on Friday, June 8th at 7pm ET.

Earlier games: On Thursday, May 31st the New York Fury got back to their winning ways beating the Philadelphia Fever in front of the home crowd by a score of 3 – 0. With a record of 3 – 1, the Fury  sit in WPSL Elite standings at second place with nine points. This puts them six points behind the first place Boston Breakers. The Fever (0 – 2 -1) weren’t able to get the road win and their first win on the season.

WPSL Weekend Games: On Saturday, June 2nd the New England Mutiny (1 -1 -1) host the Fever in East Longmeadow, MA at 7pm ET. The Mutiny add to their roster Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year Morgan Andrews as they attempt to get their second win of the season. The Mutiny will be playing their first game with interim head coach Chris Legates. Boston College star and recent US National Team training camp member Kristen Mewis’s availability for the game is uncertain. The last time these two teams met, they played to a draw. The Fever hope to better their effort this game and get their first win of the season.

There are two games on Sunday, June 3rd. The first game scheduled for a 5pm ET start features a match between the remaining two undefeated teams in the league, the Boston Breakers visiting the Chicago Red Stars. The night-cap at 7pm ET will have the Flash visiting the Fury in a battle for New York supremacy. At the moment, the Flash have the edge with a win in their first meeting, the Fury hope to even the score.

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.

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.

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