27 August, 2011

Western New York wins WPS in shootout

The final of Women's Professional Soccer between the Philadelphia Independence and the Western New York Flash ended in a 1-1 draw, forcing a dramatic shootout in Rochester, NY. Former Portland Pilot Christine Sinclair of Canada put Western New York ahead in the 67th minute, and the Flash seemed to be in control of the match with Brazilian Marta, the undisputed best player in the world, controlling the midfield. But USWNT and former USC star Amy Rodriguez equalized for Philadelphia in the 87th minute and regulation time finished 1-1. In the final minute of overtime, Philadelphia goalkeeper and USWNT backup Nicole Barnhart, former Stanford Cardinal, made a miraculous save on what looked like a sure goal to send the game to shootout.

All five shooters scored for Western New York, and Philadelphia's first four shooters also scored, despite Flash goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris getting a piece of Poway, CA resident and former USD Torero Leigh Ann Robinson's attempt, which spun backwards into the goal. Then in the last attempt of the shootout, former North Carolina Tarheel Ashlyn Harris saved Spanish international Laura del Rio's shot and won the title for Western New York.

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