Evanston, Ill. (June 17, 2012) – A well-rounded scoring effort by the Red Stars helped pave the way to a 4-0 victory over the visiting NE Mutiny on the beautiful Lakefront Field of Northwestern University in Evanston Saturday night. First half goal was scored by Michele Weissenhofer, followed by a trio of second half goals from Amanda Cinalli, Lauren Fowlkes, and Lori Chalupny.
The first thirty minutes were back and forth with both sides getting legitimate chances on goal. The Red Stars has opportunities to strike early, but it was New England that may have had the better of the looks early on with a flurry of 1v1 chances against Red Stars’ goalkeeper Jamie Forbes, who was able to force their shots wide on several occasions.
“From an attacking stand point, the first half was the best we’ve been all year,” said Red Stars’ Head Coach Rory Dames. “We had several different sequences where we put together a good string of passes and got somebody in (front of goal), but our quality around the goal wasn’t good enough.”
“Defensively, we left ourselves open up way too much and we dodged three or four bullets where they could have put chances in early on.”
It was the 35th minute when the Red Stars were able to get on the board when Amanda Cinalli got to the right-side of the endline and placed a low cross which found Michele Weissenhofer running at point-blank range in front of the goal. That shot would give the Red Stars a 1-0 lead heading into the half.
As temperatures dropped in the second half, the threat of rain loomed over the field and each team had to adjust to a heavy increase in wind. Red Stars’ midfielder Kara Kabellis, who was substituted into the game in the second half, was able to make an immediate impact with her low-driving corner kick in the 68th minute that was flicked backwards by Julianne Sitch and blasted home by Amanda Cinalli to give the home-side a more comfortable 2-0 lead.
“I was able to come into the game at a good time where we had already gotten a little more control of the game,” said Kabellis. “These players know the game so well, so it wasn’t hard to get into the flow even though this is my first game of the year.”
Just five minutes later, it was another Kabellis corner-kick that shot straight through the defense onto the core of forward Lauren Fowlkes, who looked as surprised as anyone that the deflection bounced right into the net.
The final tally of the night was clinched by team captain Lori Chalupny who, with the wind at her back, had been gunning for a long range shot late in the second half. It ended up being a low blast to the corner of the net from 20 yards out that would give the captain her contribution to the scoring line and finalize a 4-0 Red Stars’ victory.
“It took a little bit of time for us to get into a rhythm but I thought our attacking third was a lot better today,” she said. “There was a lot of movement and it paid off when we were able to finish the goals. This is the halfway point of our season and after a tough 10 days it was a good way to end that first half of the season. Being in first place is obviously where we wanted to be but we need to regroup now and prepare for the second half (of the season).”
The Red Stars record is now 6-1-0, good for first place in the WPSL Elite league standings. Chicago remains undefeated at home and holds onto 5 shutouts this season with 16 goals for and only 4 against.
The Red Stars take to the road next weekend for a pair of games at Chesapeake Charge and Philly Fever. The following week will find them at Boston Breakers before returning home for the final two home games of the season on July 7th at 6pm in Evanston vs Philly Fever and July 14th at 7pm in Lisle vs WNY Flash. Individual tickets on sale now at www.chicagoredstars.com: $15 Preferred and $10 General Admission. Discounted group tickets available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shots: Chicago 20, NE 5
Shots on Goal: Chicago 12, NE 0
Fouls: Chicago 7, NE 3
Corners: Chicago 7, NE 1
Goals: Michele Weissenhofer 35’ (Assisted by Amanda Cinalli), Amanda Cinalli 68’ (Assist by Julianne Sitch), Lauren Fowlkes 73’ (Assist by Kara Kabellis), Lori Chalupny 84’ (Unassisted)
Chicago: Jamie Forbes GK, Lauren Alkek, Sammy Scofield, Mary Therese McDonnell, Julianne Sitch, Jen Buczkowski, Lori Chalupny, Alyssa Mautz, Amanda Cinalli, Lauren Fowlkes (Zoey Goralski 75’), Michele Weissenhofer (Kara Kabellis 60’)
NE: Vikki Alonzo GK, Taleen Dimirdjian, Lauren Reilly, Karyn Riviere, Cunningham, Therese Smith, Morgan Andrews, Riley Houle, Tiya Gallegos, Kate Howarth, Rebecca Mays
Subs Used: McIntosh, Parker
The WPSL Elite League is new in 2012. The 8-team league is ASA Chesapeake Charge, Boston Breakers, Chicago Red Stars, FC Indiana, New England Mutiny, New York Fury, Philadelphia Fever, and WNY Flash.
Join our mailing list at www.chicagoredstars.com for details and follow the team on twitter @chicagoredstars and facebook.com/chicagoredstars.