Sky Blue FC Blanks North Carolina with 2-0 Victory
Tasha Kai, Kim DeCesare Tally Goals in Win
Lakewood, N.J. (Saturday, March 25, 2016) – Sky Blue FC won its second consecutive match of the 2016 National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) preseason on Saturday, defeating the University of North Carolina by a tally of 2-0 on the campus of Georgian Court University in Lakewood, N.J.
“It was great to get another 90 minutes under our belt, and today was an improvement from last week,” said Christy Holly, Sky Blue FC head coach. “Naturally, our players were a little bit sharper, and we were able to play with more fitness. The most important thing for us is to build a connection and understanding of one another throughout the field, and we are clearly beginning to create a greater awareness of our intentions as a club. We still have much to improve upon in terms of our overall expectations, but it is very satisfying to see that we are firmly establishing the foundation of who we aspire to be as a team.”
Sky Blue FC was able to strike early in this contest, with its first conversion coming in just the 4th minute of the contest. The ball was initially put into play by Kelley O’Hara on a corner kick, placing a well-hit strike in front of the far post. There to collect was defender Christie Rampone, who quickly settled before centering for a streaking Tasha Kai. The crafty Hawaiian then wasted no time in firing a shot on frame that ripped into the back netting, giving the host side a 1-0 advantage.
Both teams engaged in quality back-and-forth action after that opening notch, with Sky Blue FC eventually extending its edge to 2-0 in the 61st minute. On the scoring play, British forward Leah Galton gained possession and raced down the left flank into space. After a quick stutter step gave her room to pull the ball back, she struck a perfectly placed cross in front of the mouth of the goal. There awaiting the distribution was Kim DeCesare, who immediately headed a hard bouncer over the opposing netminder for her first goal of the preseason.
With the win, Sky Blue FC increases its preseason docket to 2-0 after a 1-0 victory over St. John’s University last Sunday afternoon at Wexler Field on the campus of Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School.
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Sky Blue FC vs. University of North Carolina
March 26, 2016 – Georgian Court University
Lakewood, New Jersey
SBFC 4 N.Kai (C.Rampone)
SBFC 61 K.DeCesare (L.Galton)
SBFC – C.Stanley (C.Casey-68), C.Rampone (K.Grubka-58), E.Skroski, M.Hayes, E.Simon, S.Killion, N.Stanton, T.Lytle (S.Gordon-68), K.O’Hara (D.Schulmann-52), M.Morris (L.Galton-46), N.Kai (K.DeCesare-46)
Subs Not Used: B.Anghel, C.Goodson, R.Breton, K.Conheeney, T.Diederich, K.Freda, D.Richardson, K.Haycook
UNC – Emily Bruder-2, Clay Weaver-3, Kim McCormack-4, Maya Worth-5, Annie Kingman-7, Abby Elinsky-8, Frannie Reuland-9, Maddie Schultz-11, Jessie Scarpa-12, Samantha Leshnak-13, Julia Ashley-16, Megan Buckingham-18, Lindsey Harris-23/20, Taylor Otto-27, Nicole Crutchfield-32, Sarah Ashley Firstenberg-54, Hanna Gardner-71, Jenny Chiu-95