Discussion in 'W-League and WPSL' started by StarCityFan, Mar 23, 2011.
D.C. United Women fall behind early (to the North Jersey Valkyries), lose 2-1
Team press release on game
The DCU Women played their final road match of the season today, a 1-1 draw with the New Jersey Rangers. To put matters into context, this is the only match so far this season that the Rangers have not lost: they're 0-4-1 with a GF/GA of 2/14.
Meanwhile, DCUW is 1-3-2 and in next-to-last place in the Northeast Division, while they need to finish no worse than second (out of six teams) in order to make the playoffs.
The good news is that all of their (four) remaining games are at the Soccerplex and, except for the Long Island Rough Riders, are against what should be unformidable opponents. They need to sweep these matches, then hope that either the Rough Riders or the New Jersey Wildcats - the current #1 and #2 teams - slip enough to let them in. It helps that those two teams have yet to play their two matches against each other.
The DCU Women kept themselves in playoff contention with a 2-0 win over the New York Magic. It was a frustrating match to watch, with DCU repeatedly getting the ball directly in front of goal but seldom finding a way to put it in.
Tiffany Brown broke the shutout in the 35th minute off a feed from Marisa Abegg. With only the goalkeeper to beat, Brown faked her out and then slid the ball past her.
The second goal was set up by right flank defender Bri Hovington, who came on in the second half and provided a huge burst of energy for the rest of the game. Her long cross came right to the feet of Christine Nairn, who fired the ball in from near the top of the box.
At the other end of the field, the very dangerous Rashidah Sherman (the 2010 W-League Rookie of the Year and the #2 scorer in the league, behind Kelly Parker) was kept in check throughout. The Magic had virtually no serious threats to score.
Next, the team plays the Northeast Division leading Long Island Rough Riders Thursday evening at 7. A win would put DCU within three points of the Rough Riders with a game in hand. It's a must-win to keep United's playoff hopes alive.
Team press release
I just realized that I misread the standings: it's the Rough Riders with a game in hand on DC, not the other way round. This makes Thursday's match a must-win for DCU - a loss or tie would eliminate them from playoff contention. Even with a win they have to hope that either the Wildcats or the Rough Riders don't get more than three points each in their remaining matches. It helps that the teams have to play each other one more time, so someone has to falter.
DC Ladies escape with a key win
That adage about a two-goal lead being harder to defend than a one-goal lead never made much sense to me, but tonight’s match against the division-leading Long Island Rough Riders made an argument in its favor.
The United Women controlled the game for most of the first half and into the second. They scored early, in the 11th minute, thanks to two Freedom veterans.* Danielle Malagari passed the ball through the back line, and Christie Welsh made a vigorous effort to run onto it and send it into the left netting. But the starting lineup seemed to run out of gas early: Malagari was subbed out in the 37th minute, and Welsh in the 43rd.
Even so, DC doubled their lead two minutes into the second half as Katie Watson - yet another Freedom veteran who had come in for Christie - and Amalya Clayton did a clinical give and go in the outer left corner of the box, Clayton to Watson to Clayton and into the right-hand side of the net.
After that, the home team settled back and seemed content to run out the clock. Not surprisingly, the Rough Riders had other ideas and began to control the run of play, finally getting on the scoreboard in the 65th minute as the United defense let Brook DeRosa slide a ball in from the right that gave Jennifer Leaverton an open shot in front of goal that she put away easily.
That seemed to give Long Island a spark, and they dominated even more with multiple chances after that. United, by contrast, seemed to have no attacking plan at all and would just kick the ball deep downfield rather than trying to maintain possession. The scariest moment came in the 81st minute when a hard Rough Rider shot bounced off the left post. They would go on to earn four corner kicks in the final ten minutes, some scary and some not so. Their final chance was in the second minute of stoppage time with a corner kick from the right, but fortunately for DC it went into the right side netting. The referee blew his whistle shortly after the resulting goalkick.
The result keeps United’s playoff hopes alive, though they still need help. They’re three points back of both the Rough Riders and the New Jersey Wildcats, but they have only two games left while the other teams have three. Additionally, the Wildcats have won the season series and will therefore prevail if they and the DCU Women are tied at the end of the season. So the best hope is probably for the Wildcats to beat the Rough Riders in their upcoming matchup, for Long Island to lose one of their other two games, and for United to prevail on the goal-differential tiebreaker (a little tricky since Long Island is currently +9 while DC is +2).
*When I refer to Freedom veterans, I'm including the W-League team as well as the WPS one.
Incidentally, the W-League reports an attendance of 932 for this match, which is very impressive for a weeknight game at this level.
It felt like more than that. Good show.
Press release from Friday's win.
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OdTgJHYuuDw"]YouTube - D.C. United Women vs New Jersey Rangers‏[/ame]
The DC United Women won their final game of the season, 2-0, against the North Jersey Valkyries. Well into the first half Jerica DeWolfe scored a Carli-Lloyd-style golazo from nearly 40 yards out that just snuck in under the crossbar. Early in the second half Hayley Siegel knocked a shot into the left side netting from about fifteen yards out. (At the last match I attended, I sat near a friend of Hayley's, who assured me that she never ever took shots on goal. Since then she's scored twice and picked up an assist.)
Alas, it was all too little, too late, as earlier in the day the only team DCU could catch in the standings, the Long Island Rough Riders, thumped the New Jersey Wildcats, 3-0, to both clinch a playoff spot for themselves and to knock the Washington women out of contention. This year the red-and-black must settle for third place.
If your a fan of DC United, you may want to get in the game yourself. Get Fit and have fun playing in the Washington, DC metro area. Join or start a team with Metro Sports Leagues. We offer Adult Coed Soccer for all levels of play. Contact us or visit http://www.metrosportsleagues.com to register.
or email firstname.lastname@example.org
D.C. United Women named USL W-League's Rookie Franchise of the Year for 2011
2012 Season Tickets on Sale
Strong Turnout for D.C. Tryouts
The team has reported that they've already sold 400 tickets, building on last year's attendance, which was the second-highest in the league despite a not terribly fan-friendly schedule with lots of weeknight games.
I certainly plan on making more than the two I got out to at the end of last season.
DCU Women 2012 schedule
Home opener is Saturday, May 19, at 7 pm, against the storied Virginia Beach Piranhas.
The schedule is much more fan-friendly this year, with just one weeknight home game.
Also, the Eastern Conference divisions have been realigned, putting DCU in with a bunch of Virginia teams (plus Dayton), so it wouldn't be that hard to get to some away games as well, particularly the ones just across the river with the Northern Virginia Majestics.
Should add that there's a preseason exhibition match as well, on Saturday, April 21, as part of the "Headers for Hope" charity soccer tournament. VIP season ticket holders get a free pass, while regular season ticket holders get half off. Details (such as time and opponent) are TBD.
New "season opener" date with this announcement yesterday:
May 12 - Boston Breakers
Women's Soccer News: D.C. United Women Prepare for 2012 W-League Season
D.C. United Women welcome back four key vets with first announced 2012 signings
Marisa was on the Washington Freedom roster in 2010 as a developmental player.
The rumors were true!:
Becky Sauerbrunn of the U.S. national soccer team signs with D.C. United Women
We'll see how many home matches that covers.
More DCU signings (from an email I received this evening):
Menchel was with the team last year, as I recall, and I think she was with the W-League Freedom before that.
My season preview of the DCU Women is up at: http://www.allwhitekit.com/?p=9101
Writeups on the match with Boston:
Mine - http://www.allwhitekit.com/?p=9147
DCU's - http://www.dcunitedwomen.com/home/625644.html
Boston's - http://www.bostonbreakerssoccer.com/home/625598.html
And one more from a real journalist:
Separate names with a comma.