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FC Gold Pride Opens New Stadium with 1-0 Win Over Boston

June 20, 2010 - Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) - FC Gold Pride News Release

HAYWARD, CA (June 19, 2010) - As World Cup fever builds, and the best men's soccer players in the world battle in the tournament abroad, the best women's players in the world compete in the WPS here at home. FC Gold Pride (7-2-1) faced off with the Boston Breakers (1-4-4) Saturday, June 19 at 7PM PST in an exciting game at their new home stadium, played in front of 3,588 fans.

Last time these two met, Marta scored two goals in the first half giving the Pride a 2-1 victory over the Breakers. Today, the Pride came out on top again, with Kelley O'Hara giving them a 1-0 win. Being the opening game at the newly renovated Pioneer Stadium, this was an important win for the Pride.

In the first ten minutes, the Pride struggled to get the ball on the floor, and get into a rhythm on the new field.

"In the first five minutes we came out, and it took us a couple of minutes to get used to ]the wider field]," said forward Kelley O'Hara.

A foul on the top of the box in the 9th minute was taken by Boston's Kristine Lilly, who initially hit the wall, but got another open shot off that hit the crossbar.

Sinclair got a good chance in the 20th minute, with a driven cross from Marta, but her header was saved by Boston goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher.

Buehler played well with accurate distribution out of the back, even getting forward for a shot in the 26th minute.

Boston made a substitution in the 28th minute, and replaced goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher with Ashley Phillips.

Christine Sinclair was able to beat Boston's back line, and get crosses off as well as settle and distribute the ball to Marta and Kelley O'Hara, but the Pride was unable to finish in the first half.

O'Hara scored in the 36th minute to put the Pride up 1-0 with a driven shot to the top left corner of the goal. Ali Riley was able to intercept a pass and combine with O'Hara and Sinclair giving O'Hara the shot and well-deserved goal.

In the second half, the Breakers came out strong, forcing Buehler to make a good save, and keeping the Pride in their own half for the first five minutes.

Becky Edwards, at holding mid, was able to combine with Shannon Boxx, and both found O'Hara and Sinclair up top and Riley and Buehler in the back in the first 20 minutes of the second half.

In the 57th minute the Pride lost a ball in the back, giving the Breakers a dangerous corner kick that almost resulted in a goal.

Whenever Marta got a breakaway, the fans went wild, and the shrill cheers of young girls filled the nearly full stadium.

In the 62nd minute Tiffeny Milbrett came in for Carrie Dew, and Bosio for Edwards. The Pride changed their formation to a 4-4-2 to make more use of the width of the field.

"We took a chance on playing three midfielders that were somewhat similar [Boxx, Dew, and Edwards]," said head coach Albertin Montoya. "With a lot of space to cover, we made a tactical change in the second half to put Tiff [Milbrett] and Kiki [Bosio] with a bit more speed in the middle, and Kelley out wide."

It was a close call for the Pride in the 68th minute when Fabiana was able to beat Riley and get a shot from the end line five yards to the right of the goal. Luckily for the Pride, it was deflected, and hit the crossbar instead of the back of the net. Then, on the next play, Buehler retaliated with a driven shot from 18 yards out that was almost a goal.

Boxx was a dynamic player for the Pride in the second half, continuing to switch the field, and maintain possession of the ball. Ali Riley also continued to make runs up the left side of the field, combining with Boxx and O'Hara as well as getting back defensively.

"The fans in the Bay Area have been tremendous," said O'Hara, "I love home games because I love being able to play in front of our fans. They are a huge reason that we do so well at home."

Following their win Saturday June 19 against the Boston Breakers, FC Gold Pride will play another match in their new Cal State East Bay stadium against Sky Blue FC (4-3-2). The two will face off for the third time this season on Sunday June 27 3PM PST at Pioneer Stadium. The first game April 17 resulted in a 3-1 win for the Pride, and they came out on top once again May 1 with a 1-0 win on Sky Blue FC's home turf. The Pride hope to continue to win at home for their fans with next weekend's match, and maintain their five game no-loss streak at home.

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