By Kathryn Leeber
(Aug. 16, 2017) — The Boston Breakers fell to the Houston Dash, 3-1, in front of 3,003 fans Wednesday night at Jordan Field. Boston tied the game early on at 1-1, but the Dash tallied two goals in the second half.
“It’s frustrating,” Boston Breakers head coach Matt Beard said. “I just feel right now, we’ve just got too many injuries at the moment, and it’s killing us … but we’ve got to show a bit of character, a bit of pride in our work and what we do. We’ve got a very tough game on Saturday, but we’ve got to respond positively and continue to fight for every point.”
Houston (7-9-2) put the pressure onto Boston early on. In the fourth minute, the Dash pushed the ball past the defense, but Breakers’ goalkeeper Abby Smith came out of goal to secure the ball.
The Breakers (3-8-7) similarly looked for an early lead, as Rosie White tried to find the back of the net after picking up a loose ball, but Houston goalkeeper Jane Campbell was there to make the save.
Two minutes later, as the Dash found an opening in the defense, Smith again came off her line to try and make the stop. Houston forward Sarah Hagen grabbed the rebound at the corner of the net to take the 1-0 lead.
Smith made another crucial save in the 21st minute when Camille Levin took a shot from the top of the box. Smith punched it above the crossbar.
Margaret Purce crossed the ball in front of the goal and it landed on Natasha Dowie’s head as she sent it past Campbell to tie the game 1-1 in the 26th minute.
The Breakers had a free kick shortly after, taken by Megan Oyster. She found Julie King, but her shot went above the goal.
With one minute of stoppage time added on, the Dash were awarded a free kick just outside the area. Levin took it, but the shot went off the crossbar.
Adriana Leon had an opportunity for the Breakers to take the lead in the 50th minute as she shot the ball from the side of the goal, but Campbell was able to get her glove on it and punch it over the bar. White immediately followed up with another shot at the top of the box, but it went high above the net.
As Janine Beckie was running towards the goal, she received a pass from Nichelle Prince and was able to hit the ball just past Smith to give Houston a 2-1 lead in the 64th minute.
The next chance for the Breakers came in the form of a free kick, but the shot went right to Campbell. She ended the night with four saves.
Hagen had another shot for the Dash, but it went off the crossbar. She was given another chance to score after Rachel Daly tried to get a shot off, but Smith was there to make the save. Hagen picked up the rebound and put it in the back of the net to extend Houston’s lead to 3-1 in the 79th minute.
The Breakers remain at home and will play the Orlando Pride Saturday, Aug. 19, at 4 p.m. ET. The game is sold out. Tickets to all Boston Breakers home games are available by calling 617-945-1704 or by visiting breakerstickets.com.
Notes: Rookie forward Ifeoma Onumonu made the first start of her professional career … Natasha Dowie scored her fourth goal of the season. It was the seventh of her career with the Breakers. All seven goals have been scored at Jordan Field … Rookie Margaret Purce notched the first assist of her professional career.
NWSL Match Report
Match: Boston Breakers vs. Houston Dash
Date: Aug. 16, 2017
Venue: Jordan Field, Allston, Mass.
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
Weather: 81 degrees, sunny
1 2 F
BOS 1 0 1
HOU 1 2 3
HOU – Sarah Hagen – 11 ‘
BOS – Natasha Dowie (Margaret Purce) – 26’
HOU – Janine Beckie (Nichelle Prince) – 64’
HOU – Sarah Hagen – 79’
BOS: 14-Abby Smith; 21-Margaret Purce, 8-Julie King (C), 4-Megan Oyster, 17-Amanda Frisbie; 26-Angela Salem (25-Morgan Andrews, 69), 5-Amanda Da Costa (18-Tiffany Weimer, 85), 10-Rosie White; 19-Adriana Leon, 9-Natasha Dowie (23-Katie Stengel, 67), 22-Ifeoma Onumonu
Subs not used: 15-Sammy Joe Prudhomme
Head Coach: Matt Beard
HOU: 1-Jane Campbell; 2-Poliana, 12-Amber Brooks (c), 55-Janine Van Wyk, 22-Cami Levin; 5-Cari Roccaro, 16-Janine Beckie, 17-Andressinha (4-Bruna Benites, 90); 3-Rachel Daly, 9-Sarah Hagen (27-Caity Heap, 80), 14-Nichelle Prince (8-Claire Falknor, 85)
Subs not used: 30-Bianca Henninger, 23-Cami Privett, 24-Kelly Conheeney
Head Coach: Omar Morales
Stats Summary: BOS / HOU
Shots: 15 / 19
Shots on goal: 5 / 9
Saves: 6 / 4
Corner Kicks: 7 / 2
Fouls: 12 / 10
Offside: 0 / 2
BOS – Abby Smith (caution, 45)
BOS – Megan Oyster (caution, 90)
Referee: Matthew Franz
Assistant Referee 1: Victor Vazquez
Assistant Referee 2: Francisco Bermudez
Fourth Official: Michael Dee