Press Release Portion of story printed with permission of Boston Breakers and WPS
Cambridge, Mass. (May 2, 2009) – The Boston Breakers became the first team to score against and defeat the first-place Los Angeles Sol with a 2-1 victory in Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) action on Saturday evening at Harvard Stadium in Cambridge, Mass.
With the win, Boston (3-2-0 – 9 pts.) jumps ahead of Chicago (2-0-2 – 8 pts.) into second place in the league standings. Los Angeles is now 3-1-1 and remains in first place with 10 points.
Boston Breakers forward Kelly Smith added to her resume as she became the first player to record a goal against Los Angeles this season with her second-minute tally. It is now the fastest goal scored in the WPS this season, and it was the fourth goal for Smith in four matches played.
Kristine Lilly notched the game-winning goal with a left-footed strike in the 55th minute. It was her second goal of the season and first game-winner for the Breakers forward.
The Sol cut into the Breakers lead in the 63rd minute. Aya Miyama sent a ball in the box and teammate Brittany Bock deflected the ball off her body. It was Bock’s first goal of the season.
“I am really proud of the players because they were embarrassed last week,” said Breakers head coach Tony DiCicco.
“They played the number one team in the league who hadn’t lost a game or given up a goal, and I am very proud of the showing we had. The key to the game was mentality. I thought we started well in both halves, but Los Angeles is a very good team.”
Smith’s goal came from a great buildup which started with teammates Lilly and midfielder Angela Hucles. The two started the play at the midfield on a smooth give-and-go. Hucles then found Heather Mitts streaking down the sideline and her cross landed on the foot of Kelly Schmedes.
Schmedes shot was deflected and Smith jumped all over the loose ball and rifled a shot to the left of a diving Sol goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc (four saves).
The crowd of over 8,000 supporters came to see not only the Breakers but the leagues top team and the World's Top Female player, Marta.
"She inspires me so much", said Gabriella Carreiro of Upton, MA, who plays for the Stars Club Team of Acton, MA. "I watch how she practices and how she plays. She dedicates her whole life to soccer."
Carreiro's friend and teammate, Tamar Bulka a Newton resident of Israeli descent was equally in awe of Marta. "I love to watch her and the other girls. I watch what they do and add it to my own game," said the young lady of Israeli.
The Stars Club team, whom the two girls play for are a U12 travel club that plays nationally and is ranked No. 12 in the nation.
At the 12 minute mark, Schmedes almost gave the Breakers an early 2-0 lead when she was sent in alone off a nice long ball from defender Alex Scott. LeBlanc came out to cut the angle and handled a soft shot easily.
Los Angeles best chance in the first half came in the 30th minute when forward Han Duan’s goal was called back on an offside.
After a slow start to the second half, Lilly livened things up for the hometown crowd when she gave the Breakers an insurance goal in the 55th minute. Boston defender Stacy Bishop found Lilly streaking down the left side of the field.
Bishop placed a long ball over the head of Los Angeles defender Manya Makoski and Lilly caught up to the bouncing ball, settled it and drilled a low shot to the far post for a 2-0 lead.
After Bock scored for Los Angeles to make it 2-1, the game settled down until the 76th minute when Marta blasted a shot to the left of Breakers goalkeeper Kristin Luckenbill (three saves) from about the 20 yard line. Luckenbill dove to her right to keep the Breakers in the lead.
Minutes later, Smith had a chance at her second of the night when she drilled a shot high over the crossbar from 18 yards out. In the 82nd minute, the Breakers had another great chance when Bishop one-timed a shot which sailed high over the left corner of the goal.
In the 85th minute Marta excited the crowd with a dangerous cross from the right of Luckenbill, but the ball sailed to the far corner. Marta had a chance in the 89th minute from right inside the 18 yard line, but Luckenbill handled the low shot to secure the Breakers victory. Miyama had a free kick in the 90th minute which Luckenbill dove to save.
I spoke to Angela Hucles after the game and asked what the teams strateegy was against the speedy and elusive Marta, "The defense did a great job. We knew we had to be aware of Marta at all times and we accomplished that. Everyone played great right across the board."
"This was a great win for us. We needed to concentrate on getting three points. Los Angeles entered the game four points ahead of us and with this win we closed the gap to one. It was a great win," the articulate Hucles continued.
Game Notes: The Breakers goal by Kelly Smith was the quickest goal scored in the WPS this season. The previous fastest goal scored was by Sol defender Allison Falk in the sixth minute on March 29…Smith now leads the WPS in goals scored with four. She was also named to the WPS April Player of the Month…Both of Kristine Lilly’s goals this season have come on the Breakers home field at Harvard Stadium. Her first goal came against St. Louis on April 11…Tonight’s crowd of at Harvard Stadium is the second highest attendance number recorded this season in the WPS. The record is 14,837 fans which attended the Washington Freedom at Los Angeles Sol game on Sunday, March, 29 at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.
The Breakers and the Los Angeles Sol will meet again next week when Boston travels to the Home Depot Center on Sunday, May 10. For more information about the Boston Breakers, go the www.bostonbreakers.com
May 2, 2009-Cambridge, Mass. – Harvard Stadium
Los Angeles Sol – Boston Breakers 1-2
GOALS 1 2 – Total
Boston 1 1 – 2
Los Angeles 0 1 – 1
1 – Boston: Smith 4, (Schmedes 2), 2nd minute
2 – Boston: Lilly 2, (Bishop 2), 55th minute
3 – Los Angeles: Brittany Bock 1 (Aya Miyama 2), 63rd minute
LOS ANGELES Karina LeBlanc; Brittany Bock, Stephanie Cox, Martina Franko, Manya Makoski, Aly Wagner, Shannon Boxx, Aya Miyama, Camille Abily (Katie Larkin, 74th minute), Marta, Han Duan.
BOSTON: Kristin Luckenbill; Alex Scott, Amy LePeilbet, Sue Weber, Heather Mitts; Kelly Smith, Angela Hucles, Stacy Bishop; Kelly Schmedes (Kasey Moore 75th minute), Christine Latham (Amy Rodriquez 64th minute), Kristine Lilly.
Cautions – None.
Ejections – None.
Statistics LA BOS
Total Shots 11 (4) 14 (8)
Shots on Goal 4 (0) 6 (4)
Saves 4 (3) 3 (0)
Fouls 10 (4) 11 (6)
Corners 7 (2) 5 (3)
Offsides 3 (2) 1 (1)
Weather – 71, clear and warm
Officials - R: Kari Seitz; A1: Danielle Magourik; A2: Douglas Coutts; FO: Michael Rugnetta.