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FC Gold Pride defeat the Chicago Red Stars 2-0, Retain first place in WPS Standings

May 9, 2010 - Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) - FC Gold Pride News Release

CASTRO VALLEY, Calif. - FC Gold Pride (4-1-0, 12 points) shut out the Chicago Red Stars (1-3-1, 4 points), 2-0, Saturday evening at Castro Valley Athletic Stadium. The victory extended FC Gold Pride's team record winning streak to four games and kept the Bay Area club in first place in the WPS standings. It looked like FC Gold Pride would open the scoring in the 25th minute when Kelley O'Hara won a penalty kick for the second straight game but for the second consecutive game FC Gold Pride failed to convert it.

On a swift counterattack, Marta dribbled downfield and from the top of the 18-yard box fed O'Hara who was cutting into the box from the right. O'Hara fell to the turf and the referee pointed to the penalty kick spot, then turned and showed Chicago defender Ifeoma Dieke a red card deeming that she pushed O'Hara and she was the last defender.

Tiffeny Milbrett stepped to the spot, but shot the PK weakly towards the left side of the goal and Red Stars goalkeeper Jillian Loyden snagged it.

Following Dieke's dismissal, Red Stars head coach removed midfielder Casey Nogueira from the match in favor of defender Natalie Spilger to rebalance Chicago's back line.

Milbrett redeemed herself for her missed PK just before halftime. In the 45th minute O'Hara, on the left side of the 18-yard box, received a cross and one-timed it to Milbrett in the center of the box. Milbrett volleyed the ball off the crossbar and the rebound came right back to her. After juggling the ball, she once again volleyed it and this time found the back of the net to give FC Gold Pride a 1-0 lead.

"We hoped to get into halftime scoreless, and them scoring a minute before halftime was a blow for us," Red Stars Head Coach Emma Hayes said of Milbrett's goal. "Chasing the game for 60 minutes is just too difficult for this level."

FC Gold Pride extended the lead to 2-0 in the 78th minute as O'Hara worked a give and go with second half substitute Kim Yokers to net her first WPS goal. Yokers feed found O'Hara alone on the right side of the box and O'Hara curved her shot past Loyden and into the far side netting.

"We have some many good players on this team that there's goal coming from all over the field," said O'Hara. "It feels great to finally score and I'm just excited that we're undefeated at home and just got a 2-0 win over a really good team."

O'Hara almost added her second goal in the 90th minute but her right-footed blast rocketed off the crossbar.

Chicago's best chance of the evening came two minutes into the second half as substitute Ella Masar dribbled past the FC Gold Pride defense drawing goalkeeper Nicole Barnhart off her line but Masar's shot went straight into Barnhart's feet. Barnhart recorded her second consecutive shutout in the victory. Loyden made seven saves in the loss.

"We deserved the win the way we've been playing, were getting better as the season goes on," said FC Gold Pride Head Coach Albertin Montoya.

"We've sorted out things defensively and we're creating a lot of chances. The next step is being able to put teams away early because everyone's so talented in this league that anything can happen and fortunately things have gone our way so far."

FC Gold Pride celebrated Mother's Day Weekend by wearing special red uniforms in support of the American Heart Association's Go Red for Women campaign, which raises awareness of heart disease and strokes among women and promotes healthy active lifestyles. The Bay Area side also sported teal shoelaces to raise awareness around ovarian cancer, a cause that is close to FC Gold Pride owner Nancy NeSmith's heart.

FC Gold Pride travels to Boston to face the Breakers on Friday, May 14 at Harvard Stadium.

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