TUKWILA, WA - In their second away match of the season, Vancouver Whitecaps FC women battled to a 0-0 draw against Seattle Sounders FC Women on Friday evening at Starfire Sports Stadium in Tukwila, Washington. The result earned the ‘Caps their first shutout of the season and ended their cross-border rivals’ four-match winning streak to start the campaign in the United Soccer Leagues (USL) W-League.
The first half saw little in the way of chances for either side, as both teams were keen to remain organized and maintain a cautious approach. The biggest opportunity came on 12 minutes when Mele French reached a long ball forward and off a high bounce headed the ball towards goal, but Sounders FC goalkeeper Katie Hultin came out and cut off the angle to make the stop.
Both teams picked up their play after the break and sought to break the deadlock. The ‘Caps had a chance on 49 minutes when a Demi Stokes corner kick was headed only a couple feet wide by defender Jenna Carosio – who was making her debut for Whitecaps FC in the W-League. A little over five minutes later, Stokes again generated another chance when she whipped in a dangerous free kick that bounced through the Seattle box, but ultimately evaded her teammates.
Put on the back foot by the visitors, Sounders FC responded with a close call of their own, as defender Stephanie Cox unleashed a ferocious 30-yard strike on 75 minutes, but luckily for the ‘Caps, it struck the far post and stayed out to keep the match scoreless. Barely a minute later, Vancouver were back on the attack with French sent in towards goal, but Hultin did well to come off her goal line and deny the Hawaiian.
With five minutes remaining in regulation, Seattle thought they were on the verge of scoring a carbon-copy of their winning goal against Victoria Highlanders FC one week earlier. Substitute Sophie Reiser sent in a corner kick that was headed on target by Keelin Winters, but Whitecaps FC goalkeeper Gurveen Clair came up with a massive diving save to keep it out, allowing her side to come away with a 0-0 draw.
“We’ve begun defensively to put together a full 90 minutes,” said Whitecaps FC women’s head coach Jesse Symons. “We were very focused defensively tonight and didn’t allow much. The players showed a great work rate and commitment to get a result.”
Next up for the ‘Caps women’s squad is a home match against LA Strikers this coming Wednesday night at Percy Perry Stadium in Coquitlam, BC. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. PT. For schedule and ticket information, visit whitecapsfc.com or contact Hugh Hamilton at 778-330-1360.
Shots: Vancouver 7 - Seattle 10
Saves: Vancouver 6 - Seattle 5
Fouls: Vancouver 6 - Seattle 3
Corners: Vancouver 4 - Seattle 3
Offsides: Vancouver 4 - Seattle 0
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
30.Gurveen Clair; 24.Danielle Johnson, 25.Jenna Carosio, 33.Shannon Woeller, 8.Demi Stokes; 2.Taylor Patterson (24.Marissa Mykines 63’), 21.Paige Adams (18.Nicole Setterlund 45’), 23.Jenny Jeffers (22.Brandi Vega 80’), 19.Molly Rouse; 34.Janie Frazao (3.Jenna Richardson 34’), 29.Mele French
Substitutes not used: 31.Alyssa Williamson, 20.Alison Fentor, 28.Brittany Galindo
Seattle Sounders FC Women
33.Katie Hultin; 14.Stephanie Cox, 28.Brooke Gilbert (24.Kara Kuttler 61’), 19.Annie Sittauer, 23.Kelli Smith; 11.Keelin Winters, 9.Julia Roberts (22.Victoria Frederick 87’), 17.Veronica Perez, 8.Megan Manthey (26.Allie Beahan 61’); 21.Lindsay Elston (4.Kate Deines 31’), 18.Lyndsey Patterson (10.Sophie Reiser 61’)
Substitutes not used: 38.Megan Kufeld, 25.Lindsey Johnson