The Western New York Flash earned its first victory of the season on Saturday night, giving each of the league's nine members at least one victory.
The Flash (1-2-0) scored three unanswered goals to defeat the Boston Breakers 3-1 in the team's home opener a Sahlen's Stadium in Rochester, New York. The Flash were the only winless team heading into the league's fourth week of the season.
Seattle Reign FC, Chicago Red Stars, and FC Kansas City also earned victories last night.
WNY Flash 3, Boston Breakers 1The Boston Breakers (1-2-0), as they did against the Houston Dash last week when they earn their first victory of the season, took an early lead as Morgan Marlbrough put the ball in the back of the net at the 15th minute mark. But rookie Samantha Mewis, who was the No. 4 selection in this year's draft out of UCLA, headed in the equalizer off a free kick from Becky Edwards at the 23rd minute. The goal was Mewis' first career professional goal.
Western New York's coach and general manager Aaran Lines was happy with his young team's performance following the game.
"We showed our qualities tonight, which was really good to see. A lot of young players stepped up and did well tonight.We adjusted things at halftime, and we came out and dominated the second half. We gave very little away and we deservedly won the game.Edwards put the Flash ahead with a goal, after receiving a pass from Lynn Williams, in the 62nd minute. Veteran Sydney Leroux added an insurance goal in the 88th minute -- it was Leroux's first goal as a member of the Flash. Leroux and Flash defender Whitney Engen will participate in the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup for Team USA.
"We're young, there's a process involved here but it's nice to be able to pick up a win in that process.We'll only improve, [the players] will only gain in confidence. This is a team for the future."
Western New York recorded a season-high 14 shots according to the team's website.
Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher is the lone Breaker on the U.S. National Team according to the Boston Breakers' website.
Seattle Reign FC 3, Washington Spirit 1
The Reign (2-0-2) moved within one point of first place in the NWSL with their 3-1 victory over the Spirit (2-2-0). Seattle's victory snapped a two-game losing streak.
Beverly Yanez, Merritt Mattias (goal, assist) and Jessica Fishlock tallied goals for the Reign. Kim Little added two helpers while Haley Kopmeyer, who made her first start in net this season, made four saves.
Joanna Lohman tallied the Spirits lone goal after receiving a through ball from Crystal Dunn.
SoccerWire.com reports that the Reign were without goalkeeper Hope Solo and Megan Rapinoe while the Spirit were missing goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris and defender Ali Krieger, due to their commitment to the USNT.
Chicago Red Stars 1, SKy Blue FC 0The Red Stars (2-0-1) remained undefeated after their 1-0 victory over Sky Blue FC (1-2-1) at the Village of Lisle-Benedictine University Sports Complex. Rookie midfielder Danielle Colaprico scored her first professional goal in the 54th minute and the Red Stars were able to make it stand up.
"I am really disappointed for our team because we did a very much better job of limiting chances for Chicago to score," said Jim Gabarra, Sky Blue FC Technical Director and Head Coach. "We really just had the one lapse there off the corner where we didn't clear the ball away and they scored their goal. Otherwise, we are improving as a team, and I am proud of the performance that our players put forth."
The Sky Blue FC website reports that the team was missing Christie Rampone, Kelly O'Hara, Caitlin Foord, Sam Kerr and Jonelle Filigno, while Red Stars had their full complement of eight national team members.
FC Kansas City Blues 2, Houston Dash 0
The Blues (2-2-0), who were without four players due to call-ups to the National Team, came out agressively on the offensive side. However, they weren't able to get on the board until Liz Bogus hammered home a goal in the bottom right hand corner of the net. Bogus' goal came after goalie Bianca Henniger punched a Blues' corner kick to the edge of the penalty box.
FC Kansas City had an opportunity to add to its lead before halftime but couldn't convert. Then seven minutes into the second half, Shea Groom headed in her first career goal off a cross from Sarah Hagen.
"It is very important to win without the national players and especially the very first one," FC Kansas City coach Vlatko Andonovski said. "I think it is a good confidence builder for us, especially for some of the younger players that stepped in."
The Kansas City Star reported that with that goal, the Blues, who have won two straight games, doubled its scoring with their performance. The Blues also recorded its second consecutive shutout.
Houston (1-2-1) were held scoreless for the first time this season and has lost two straight games according to the team's website. The Dash were credited with 12 shots but got just three on goal.
Four of the league's nine teams have played four games while the other five teams have been on the pitch three times. The Portland Thorns FC and the Red Stars are tied atop of the standings. The Thorns have the stingiest defense, surrendering a goal a game.
FC Kansas City is the defending champions of the three-year old league.Week Five schedule
All games can be seen live on NWSLsoccer YouTube channel.
FC Kansas City Blues at WNY Flash 7 p.m.
Boston Breakers at Chicago Red Stars 5 p.m.
Seattle Reign FC at Sky Blue FC 7 p.m.
Washington Spirit at Portland Thorns FC 10 p.m.
[photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images]