By Kathryn Leeber
(April 29, 2017) – The Boston Breakers defeated Seattle Reign FC, 3-0, for their second consecutive win of the season, moving their record to 2-1-0 in front of 2,315 fans at Jordan Field in Allston, Mass.
A shutout for Breakers’ goalkeeper Abby Smith (six saves) and a tremendous night from Adriana Leon (one goal, two assists) helped propel Boston to a win Saturday night.
“We’re really pleased. We knew exactly what Seattle was going to do,” said Boston head coach Matt Beard. “We knew that they’d look to press us high, so we wanted to bypass that press, and that’s why we went long, especially with Abby’s kicks.”
The first half saw an early start for the Breakers with their first goal coming in the 11th minute. Tiffany Weimer passed the ball to Natasha Dowie who found Leon. She sent the ball to the back of the net for her first goal of the season.
The solid passing continued to bring about many opportunities for the Breakers. Weimer and Dowie were in sync with each other, but Seattle maintained pressure throughout the first half.
Leon was able to find an open spot and send a perfect pass right to Rose Lavelle’s feet in the 15th minute. Lavelle immediately shot the ball to extend the Breakers’ lead to 2-0. It was Lavelle’s first professional goal.
The Reign had a few shots off of corner kicks, but the Breakers defense kept any scoring chances at bay. The back line of Allysha Chapman, Christen Westphal, Megan Oyster, and captain Julie King provided stellar defense when the Reign moved closer to the net.
Megan Rapinoe had a chance to elevate Seattle in the 25th minute, but her shot went just wide of the net. Rapinoe continued push the ball forward in the hopes of a goal for the Reign in the final few minutes of the half, but to no avail.
Smith had many crucial saves for the Breakers, and with support from the defense, was able to keep the Reign scoreless. She ended the night with six saves.
The start of the second half saw immediate action when Leon sent a strong pass to Dowie who went one-on-one with Seattle keeper Haley Kopmeyer and easily sent the ball to the left of the net, bringing the Breakers lead to 3-0 in the 52nd minute.
Boston continued to shoot the ball near goal, but a majority of the attempts were wide or went off the crossbar.
For the Reign, Rapinoe had many crosses in front of the Breakers’ goal, but Smith stayed with the ball at all times and made some key saves for the team, including the final few seconds in which Rapinoe took a free kick that went right to Smith’s gloves.
“I thought it was a good performance, disciplined performance. From start to finish it was fantastic,” Beard said.
The Breakers remain in Boston, taking on the North Carolina Courage on Sunday, May 7, at 6 p.m. ET. Tickets are available by calling 617-945-1704 or by visiting breakerstickets.com.
Notes: Defender and captain Julie King moved closer to second all-time in franchise appearances. Tonight marked her 90th appearance for the Breakers. She is just five back of Katie Schoepfer for second all-time and 12 behind Kristine Lilly for most all-time … Rose Lavelle scored her first professional goal in just her third game. It came in the 15th minute off an assist from Adriana Leon, who scored her first goal of the season for Boston … Leon’s assist on Natasha Dowie’s goal marked the first multi-assist game for the Breakers since July 6, 2013 when Heather O’Reilly notched two in a 2-0 win over Portland Thorns FC on the road … Abby Smith made a career-high six saves, registering her second straight shutout ... The win was Boston's first ever over Seattle, having gone 0-9-1 in the previous 10 meetings.
NWSL Match Report
Match: Boston Breakers vs. Seattle Reign FC
Date: April 29, 2017
Venue: Jordan Field, Allston, Mass.
Kickoff: 7:00 p.m. ET
Weather: 76 degrees, cloudy
1 2 F
BOS 2 1 3
SEA 0 0 0
BOS – Adriana Leon – 11’
BOS – Rose Lavelle (Adriana Leon) – 15’
BOS – Natasha Dowie (Adriana Leon) – 52’
BOS - 14-Abby Smith; 8-Julie King (C), 4-Megan Oyster, 20-Christen Westphal, 2-Allysha Chapman; 26-Angela Salem, 11-Rose Lavelle,10-Rose White (Amanda Da Costa, 73); 19-Adriana Leon (22-Ifeoma Onumonu), 9-Natasha Dowie, 18-Tiffany Weimer (21-Margaret Purce, 57)
Subs not used: 15-Sammy Jo Prudhomme, 3-Brooke Elby, 30-Kylie Strom, 25-Morgan Andrews, 17-Amanda Frisbie
Head Coach: Matt Beard
SEA - 28-Haley Kopmeyer; 9-Merritt Mathias (4-Rachel Corsie, 57), 19-Kristen McNabb, 3-Lauren Barnes, 16-Carson Pickett (33-Katie Johnson, 79),; 10-Jessica Fishlock, 20-Rumi Utsugi, 2-Christine Nairn (13-Rebekah Stott, 57); 36-Nahomi Kawasumi, 17-Beverly Yanez, 15-Megan Rapinoe
Subs not used: 24-Madalyn Schiffel, 5-Kiersten Dallstream, 6-Lindsay Elston, 7-Elli Reed
Head Coach: Laura Harvey
Stats Summary: BOS / SEA
Shots: 11 / 12
Shots on goal: 6 / 6
Saves: 6 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 9
Fouls: 15 / 8
Offside: 1 / 4
SEA – Jessica Fishlock (caution, 32’)
BOS – Rosie White (caution, 35’)
SEA – Merritt Mathias (caution, 38’)
Referee: Charles Murphy
Assistant Referee 1: Ian McKay
Assistant Referee 2: Jeremy Kieso
Fourth Official: Kali Langevin