Cary, NC – The North Carolina Courage may not have won their last game but they continue to be the only undefeated team in the league as they drew against the Chicago Red Stars.
Last Minute Draw
At the Sunday, May 6, 2018 game at Sahlen’s Stadium at WakeMed Soccer Park, the North Carolina Courage played an evenly matched game against the Chicago Red Stars. The Courage are currently the top-ranked team in the league and the Red Stars are ranked third so fans must have known competition would be tight coming in.
The Courage had seven shots on Chicago’s goal in the first half of the game versus Chicago’s one but it was that one that changed the balance of the game. In the 38th minute, Golden Boot Award winner and Chicago player Samantha Kerr got an assist from Alyssa Mautz and hit a low kick to the goal. It wasn’t the flashiest goal but it was enough to get back Courage goalkeeper Sabrina D’Angelo.
Coming out of halftime, the home team fought hard to come back from their one point deficit. Crystal Dunn had a very close shot as she got right up in Chicago goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher’s face after a pass from Lynn Williams and Debinha but Naeher still deflected it.
Naeher continued to defend Chicago’s goal impressively until the 82nd minute. Abby Erceg got the ball and did a risky volley that made it to McCall Zerboni. Zerboni hit the ball hard and finally got one past Naeher, ending the game 1-1 and giving Zerboni her third goal of the season.
This draw continues the Courage’s undefeated streak this season, which is longer than their undefeated streak last year. Not only that but they are the only team in the league to have not lost a game this season.
“I’m happy with the group. I thought we played really well today and just have to build from that,” said North Carolina Courage Head Coach Paul Riley. “We need to start taking advantage of these chances we’re creating. In all fairness, we have the players in front of goal. All week, they’ll get back in front of goal starting Tuesday – Lynn, Jess, Crystal, Hammy, Debinha, and we’ll get back at it.”
Last year, the Courage lost every game against the Red Stars except for their match in the NWSL playoffs.
The next home game is against the Washington Spirit on Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 7 PM. Earlier this season, the Courage beat the Spirit 4-2.
Story by staff reports. Photos courtesy of North Carolina Courage.