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Beat Comeback To Tie Western New York

April 24, 2011 - Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) - Atlanta Beat News Release


KENNESAW, Ga. (April 24, 2011) - The Atlanta Beat (1-1-1) came back with two second half goals to tie the Western New York Flash (1-0-1) 2-2 at KSU Soccer Stadium on Sunday night.

The Beat started the match on their heels, giving up an early goal, but they came back in the second half with big scores from their veterans to earn the tie.

The Western New York Flash gained the advantage two minutes in when Christine Sinclair found the back of the net off an Atlanta Beat defensive error. Sinclair capitalized with a low, driven ball to the far post to put away the first goal of the match.

The Beat and Flash each had moments of strong possession throughout the first half with the Flash earning all three corners and holding the advantage in shots by a four to one margin.

At the start of the second half, Atlanta's India Trotter replaced Lauren Sesselmann and Marta replaced Gemma Davidson for Western New York. Other subs throughout the half included the Beat's Kristina Larsen for Meghan Lenczyk in the 58th and Analisa Marquez in the 77th for Kylie Wright. For the Flash, Kaley Fountain came in at the 65th for Kandace Wilson and Kelly Parker replaced Alex Morgan in the 80th.

Atlanta Beat captain Lori Chalupny scored in the 56th minute when her solo effort proved an equalizer for the Beat. From the top of the box, Chalupny touched to her right and shot a rocket to the low right corner. The ball kissed the inside of the post before redirecting into the side netting.

Western New York rebounded ten minutes later as Christine Sinclair lofted a dangerous ball towards the near post where Marta flicked a header into the goal in the 66th minute to once again give the Flash a one goal lead.

Carli Lloyd received a ball five yards outside of the box three minutes later and took a quick look up before striking a driven ball up and over Flash goalkeeper, Ashlynn Harris.

Atlanta Beat goalkeeper Alli Lipsher once again rose to the occasion in her second double-digit save performance in consecutive games. She recorded 13 saves against the Flash to top her previous 2011 record of 11 saves last week. Lipsher is the reigning WPS Player of the Week and her performance tonight was nothing shy of that honor.

The match proved to be physical with five yellow cards awarded and a total of 15 fouls combined from both halves.

Quotes

Atlanta Beat Head Coach James Galanis

On the first half

"They were afraid to make mistakes, and they came out nervous."

On the halftime speech

"We're young and most of the players haven't gone through the complete cycle of playing against every team. When you're coming up and playing against the so-called best team in the league, it does funny things to your mind when you're a young star. We came out; we gave them too much respect, and we didn't work off the ball. We defended well, but we weren't really moving. So, I basically told them either they get up or we have training tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m. They can work then if they don't want to work now. They came out and they worked harder."

Final Thoughts

"I'm obviously proud of the girls. They came out and moved in the second half. The hardest challenge is making them believe they can compete at this level. Today was a great result. It's going to help them with their confidence and help them believe that they are an amazing little team. They're young and they're exciting."

Atlanta Beat goalkeeper Alli Lipsher

On the pressure:

"We tried to stay focused and know the basics. You try to stay organized."

On making 13 saves, two more than the last game

"It was nerve-wrecking and stressful but in all the best ways. It was exciting. They were an amazing team; they have so much potential and so much talent. It's fun, it's why we play. So we can play against teams like this and compare. Our backs played an absolutely amazing game."

Atlanta Beat midfielder and captain Lori Chalupny

On scoring the first Beat goal of the match to tie 1-1

"It was a great goal by Cat over the top. We kind of have this connection I feel because we've been working together for so long. So, that really started the play. I had that space and took on my defender."

Thoughts going into the half

"I think at half time, we were a little disappointed. We didn't play our game. We were playing a great team, and I think we gave them too much respect. Overall, the second half was much better. I think we were much better in the second half.

On the second half

"We were able to regroup a little bit at halftime. Our coach got us fired up and gave us a little bit of confidence. I think we realized it individually in the first half. But in the second half, we came together as a group that we need to play more. The halftime helped."

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