Atlanta Beat Outshoot Sky Blue But Fall 1-0
PISCATAWAY, NJ (June 22, 2011) - The Atlanta Beat (1-8-3) of Women's Professional Soccer put up a strong second half but fell 1-0 to Sky Blue FC at Yurcak Field (3-3-3) on the campus of Rutgers University in Piscataway, N.J.,
The Beat opened the match in a 4-3-3 with a new backline of Kylie Wright and Analisa Marquez in the center and Katherine Reynolds on the right with Lauren Sesselmann on the left. In the midfield, it was Bianca D'Agostino, Angela Salem and Kacey White. Head coach James Galanis started captain Lori Chalupny, Megan Jesolva and Meghan Lenczyk up top.
The Beat were a bit unsettled in the early going but found their stride as time progressed. After Sky Blue's Casey Noguiera sent a curling ball into the top netting, scoring directly off a corner kick, coach Galanis changed the formation to a familiar 4-4-2. In the new formation, the Atlanta back four remained the same. However, Chalupny moved to left mid, pushing White outside and leaving D'Agostino and Salem in the middle. Having four Beat players across the middle, made an immediate impact to quell the Sky Blue attack.
After 45 minutes, teams went into the half with the 1-0 scoreline, but Galanis felt his team gaining more confidence. "I just said to pressure them a little bit more," said the coach. "We needed to try to play balls both through and over their backline. That's the change we made, and it worked in the second half. We started to go more direct and created a lot more chances."
The Beat held an 17-10 advantage in overall shots but were just shy of even as Sky Blue led 7-6 in shots on goal. This marks the fourth time this season the Beat have led in shots and the first time they have held the advantage on the road.
ATLANTA BEAT HEAD COACH JAMES GALANIS
On the First Half
In the first half, we played really well. We moved the ball around really nicely. We generated some quality chances. Megan Jesovla came close to finishing and so did Chalupny. We played well; we started hesitant in the back and allowed some early chances, but the backline started to get more comfortable playing together and they did well. For the most part in the first half, we played well and generated chances. We conceded a goal directly on the corner when Noguiera scored straight off the kick as she just bent it in.
On the change in formation
Halfway through the first half, we went to a 4-4-2, bringing Chalupny out wide on the left, White on the right, and D'Agostino and Salem in the middle. Jesolva and Lenczyk remained up top. We added a midfielder after the goal which stopped their attack and completely eliminated a lot of their chances.
On substitutions after the half
Tactical changes were made at halftime that focused on threading balls through and changing the type of runs they were making, and it worked We generated a lot of chances, and we missed a lot of goals. We missed goals even right outside the six yard box, and it was very disappointing.
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