NWSL Week 4: Recap and Goals of the Week
NWSL Week 4: Recap and Goals of the Week avatar

NWSL Recap Week 4

Eleven goals were scored over the course four games Saturday night, which proved to be another entertaining day in the young NWSL season.

Ellis has selected a very experienced squad. (ISI Photos/John Todd)

Ellis has selected a very experienced squad. (ISI Photos/John Todd)

The weekend was also a send off to the 22 NWSL players that will try and win the World Cup with the United States this summer.

The NWSL will roll on without them, playing through next month before taking a break that coincides with the World Cup group stage.

The Portland Thorns were the team to miss out on the weekend’s action, earning a well-deserved rest after avoiding defeat in their first three game of the season.

Chicago Shutout Sky Blue To Remain Undefeated

Rookie Danielle Colaprico scored the only goal of the game to send Chicago Red Stars to the top of the standings alongside the Portland Thorns.

Danielle Colaprico (L) at the NWSL draft. (ISI Photos/Jose Argueta)

Danielle Colaprico (L) at the NWSL draft. (ISI Photos/Jose Argueta)

Colaprico, who was the 9th overall pick this past January out of the University of Virginia, scored the winner ten minutes into the second half when she lashed a volley into the top corner after her initial shot was blocked by teammate Julie Johnston’s face.

The volley, which came from 12 yards out, gave Chicago a deserved victory as they out-shot Sky Blue FC 19-5.

The victory sends the Red Stars up to 2nd place, tied with Portland on points (7), but behind two goals on the goal difference.

Chicago will be missing four stars, with Julie Johnston, Lori Chalupny, Shannon Boxx, and Christen Press joining the United States for this weekend’s game versus Ireland.

Defensive mainstays Christie Rampone and Kelley O’Hara will trade Sky Blue for the red, white, and blue, leaving the New Jersey club in 7th place.

The Flash Earn First Points Of Season With Win Over Boston

The Western New York Flash came from behind for their first victory of the 2015 season, overcoming an early Morgan Marlborough goal to run away convincing winners.

The initial goal came when Stephanie McCaffrey played a low cross, which found an unmarked Marlborough at the top of the six-yard box.

The equalizer came eight minutes later, with Samantha Mewis rising to head in a beautiful free kick from Beck Edwards, which went past the flat-footed Alyssa Naeher in goal.

Former Houston midfielder Becky Edwards got a goal and assist for her new club New York. (ISI Photos/Tim Bouwer)

Former Houston midfielder Becky Edwards got a goal and assist for her new club New York. (ISI Photos/Tim Bouwer)

Edwards then got a goal of her own, playing a backheel pass to Lynn Williams, receiving the ball back, and slotting past Naeher, giving the Flash a lead they would not relinquish.

Sydney Leroux, who was acquired from the Seattle Reign a few weeks before the season kicked off, scored her first goal for her new team to extend the lead and lift a weight off of her shoulders.

Leroux gather the ball and dribbled towards goal, before cutting onto her right foot and slotting past Naeher at her near post. The goal is Leroux’s first in 13 games for club and country.

Both teams remain at the foot of the table, bothering 3 points from 3 games. Naeher is the sole Breaker on the U.S. WNT roster, while Leroux and Whitney Engen will represent the Flash at the World Cup.

Kansas City Continue Rebound With Win In Houston

Houston have dropped their second game in a row, losing 2-0 at home to FC Kansas City, a result which leaves them in the bottom half of the table.

FC Kansas City, meanwhile, have won two games in a row after starting the season out with two losses.

Liz Bogus got the game winner for Kansas. (ISI Photos/Jose L. Argueta)

Liz Bogus got the game winner for Kansas. (ISI Photos/Jose L. Argueta)

Liz Bogus scored three minutes from the break to put Kansas City ahead, hitting a sweet struck volley in the bottom corner after a corner kick fell to her at the top of the box.

Shea Groom, who was selected with the 12th overall pick in the 2015 draft, added the insurance goal in the 51st minute, beating a defender to the near post to nod in Sarah Hagen’s cross.

The header was near-perfect, leaving Bianca Henninger with no chance to keep it out.

Neither team had the luxury to use U.S. internationals, with the teams sharing six of key players in the U.S. squad. Kansas City was without Becky Sauerbrunn, Lauren Holiday, Heather O’Reilly, and Amy Rodriguez, while Houston could not rely on key midfielders Carli Lloyd and Morgan Brian.

Seattle Rebound From Losing Streak With Win Over Spirit

The Reign beat the Spirit 3-1 to leapfrog them in the standings, even though Washington gave a good account of themselves on the turf field in Seattle.

Washington attempted the same amount of shots (14) while taking more corners, but was left to rue their missed chances.

Seattle, who have already lost as many games as they did in the whole of last season, went ahead in the 36th minute thanks to Beverly Yanez, who has scored in three of Seattle’s four games this season.

Yanez was able to muscle off a defender and find the back of the net after Merritt Mathias played a ball across the face of the goal.

Merritt Mathias got herself a goal and assist in the game. (ISI Photos/Tim Bouwer)

Merritt Mathias got herself a goal and assist for Seattle. (ISI Photos/Tim Bouwer)

Mathias found the net herself three minutes after the break, with Kim Little playing a long cross that found the head of Mathias and found the back of the net past Spirit goalkeeper Kelsey Wys, covering for U.S. backup goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris.

Joanna Lohman cut the Reign’s lead in half, after a great flick on from Crystal Dunn. The goal came seconds after Wys made a great save at the other end. After Wys launched the ball up field, Christine Nairn played a great ball to Dunn, who, with her back to goal, flicked the ball to the running Lohman, who slotted past Haley Kopmeyer in goal.

The goal gave the Spirit a chance to get back into the game, but Jessica Fishlock restored Seattle’s two-goal lead as she slid in to knock a Kim Little cross beyond the on-rushing Wys 15 minutes from time.

In addition to Ashlyn Harris, the Spirit will also be without their captain, Ali Krieger due to World Cup duty, while the Reign will be missing Hope Solo and Megan Rapinoe for the next few months.

Team

Games Played

Wins

Losses

Draws

GD

Points

Portland

3

2

0

1

4

7

Chicago

3

2

0

1

2

7

Seattle

4

2

2

0

4

6

Washington

4

2

2

0

0

6

Kansas City

4

2

2

0

0

6

Houston

4

1

2

1

-1

4

Sky Blue FC

4

1

2

1

-2

4

Western New York

3

1

2

0

-3

3

Boston

3

1

2

0

-4

3

Goals of the Week: Week 3

Every week, GotSoccer will give you the top three goals of the week. We will factor in skill, difficulty, and importance to determine the top three finishes of the week.

#3: Joanna Lohman (Washington) vs. Seattle Reign 5/2/2015

The goal finds its way to the top three more for its build up play than the finish…which is saying something because the finish was extremely composed from Lohman. But the vision and skill from Crystal Dunn on the assist was top class. The build up play to this goal will be amongst the best come the end of the season.

#2: Shea Groom (Kansas City) vs. Houston Dash 5/2/2015

A 5’6” forward up against a 5’10” defender challenging for a cross. Not an even match up on paper, but Shea Groom did extraordinarily well just to beat Niki Cross to the ball. She made the contact count though, with the ball going across goal, giving Melissa Henninger no chance in goal.

#1: Liz Bogus (Kansas City) vs. Houston Dash 5/2/2015

After Henninger made a weak attempt to punch a cross away, the ball was kicked around and partially cleared to Bogus, who was unmarked at the top of the box. She proceeded to take a touch and blast a volley past the helpless goalkeeper. The goal was also the winner as Kansas City kept the Dash of the score sheet for the first time this season.

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