A last-second goal by Jodi-Ann Robinson of the Western New York Flash spoiled a Breakers victory as the two teams played to a 2-2 draw Wednesday night at Dilboy Stadium in Somerville. Despite the draw, the Breakers remain unbeaten at home at 2-0-2. Their overall record is now 3-2-3 (12 points, third place). The Flash moved their record to 3-2-2 (11 points, fourth place).
"Tonight was a little bit of a heartbreaker. I thought we played well enough to win. I thought our back line was tremendous. We did a good job shutting down Abby (Wambach). Our front play was very good. Syd (Leroux) had a great goal. We did a lot of things well and without getting the win is disappointing," Breakers Head Coach Lisa Cole said. "To give up two points at home is tough. We need to get in a rhythm where we’re playing well every day. We’re getting there."
In front of a sold-out crowd of 2,124, the Breakers went down, 1-0, in the 28th minute. Wambach latched onto a cross by Samantha Kerr and headed the ball past Breakers keeper Ashley Phillips. It didn’t take long for the Breakers to put pressure on the Flash. In the 33rd minute, Katie Schoepfer made a great turn in the box and got off a sharply driven shot with her left foot that went just wide of the far post. One minute later, Schoepfer left it for Joanna Lohman, whose shot went just over the bar.
In the 44th minute, the Breakers equalized. Heather O’Reilly fought off a Flash defender before crossing to Lianne Sanderson, who then nicked it past Flash keeper Adrianna Franch with the outside of her right foot. It was Sanderson’s first goal of the season and tied the game at 1-1.
Lianne Sanderson scored her first goal of the season in Wednesday's draw (Photo By Mike Gridley)
Wambach nearly put the Flash ahead in the 52nd minute, but her shot hit the upper corner of the far post. The Breakers then took the lead in the 64th minute. Sanderson swung the ball out to Sydney Leroux, who rocketed a shot past Franch for her fifth goal of the season. Leroux is now tied with Wambach and Sophie Schmidt for the league lead in goals scored (5). For Sanderson, she added to her league lead in assists (7).
"I think Syd was good. She’s improving, she’s learning the position. You can see her coming off the flank and she’s extremely dangerous," Cole said. "I think most teams are going to have a hard time containing her."
In stoppage time, Franch came well off her line and handled the ball outside the box. On the quick restart, Leroux tried chipping Franch with the goal wide open, but the ball sailed wide.
Katie Schoepfer tries getting past Angela Salem in Wednesday's match (Photo By Mike Gridley)
The Flash leveled the match in the final minute of added time. It began on a Flash corner kick by Veronica Perez. Phillips punched it out, but Katherine Reynolds found the ball at her feet and flicked it up to Robinson, who headed it past Phillips for the last-gasp equalizer.
"It was a bit disappointing conceding at the last second of the game, but I think there’s a lot of positives we can take from this game," Sanderson said. "It was 110 percent better than our game against Sky Blue (a 5-1 loss Saturday). We weren’t ourselves, and we bounced back great today. I think we showed great character ... we can step off the field knowing we tried our hardest."
The Breakers return to action Sunday, traveling to Chicago to take on the Red Stars. They come back to Dilboy Stadium on June 16 to face Sky Blue FC.
Shots: Boston 13, WNY 12
Shots on goal: WNY 5, Boston 3
Saves: Boston: Ashley Phillips (3); WNY: Adrianna Franch (3)
Corners: WNY 6, Boston 2
Offsides: Boston 2, WNY 2
Fouls: WNY 9; Boston 5
Cautions: Boston: Mariah Nogueira 58’ (reckless foul), WNY: Brittany Taylor 75’ (reckless foul)
WNY: Abby Wambach (Samantha Kerr) 28’
BOS: Lianne Sanderson (Heather O’Reilly) 44’
BOS: Sydney Leroux (Sanderson) 64’
WNY: Jodi-Ann Robinson (Katherine Reynolds) 93’
Boston: Ashley Phillips, Julie King, Cat Whitehill, Kia McNeill, Jo Dragotta, Mariah Noguiera, Joanna Lohman, Heather O’Reilly (Kyah Simon, 46’), Lianne Sanderson, Katie Schoepfer, Sydney Leroux
Subs not used: Alyssa Naeher, Kate Howarth, Rhian Wilkinson, Anisa Guajardo, Adrian Leon
Western New York: Adrianna Franch, Alex Sahlen (Veronica Perez 82’), Estelle Johnson, Brittany Taylor, Katherine Reynolds, McCall Zerboni, Carli Lloyd, Angela Salem, Adriana Martin (Jodi-Ann Robinson 72’), Samantha Kerr (Vicki DiMartino 78’), Abby Wambach
Subs not used: Pamela Tajonar, Sarah Huffman, Amy Barczuk