Tasha Kai hopes to play her first game for Sky Blue FC this season (Photo by Jeffrey Auger)
PISCASTAWAY, N.J. — Tasha Kai is back.
The former U.S. international will be available to play for Sky Blue FC when it hosts the Chicago Red Stars in a National Women’s Soccer League game at Yurcak Field at 7 p.m. Saturday.
While Kai rejoins the team, defender Erin Simon replaced her on the 45-day disabled list after suffering a left foot fracture in a game two weeks ago.
“We look forward to getting back on the field in front of our fantastic fans on Saturday,” Sky Blue FC head coach Christy Holly said. “We had a really good week of preparation and know that we must meet our potential in order to achieve a positive result.”
After having procedures done during the offseason to both her left and right ankles, Kai has returned to full fitness. During the 2016 season, the Hawaii native made 17 starts and appeared in all 20 matches for Sky Blue FC, recording four goals and one assist.
Simon has made seven starts for Sky Blue FC this season, but the New Jersey native will miss a minimum of 45 days after having a procedure done to address a left ankle fracture she suffered two weeks ago against the North Carolina Courage. She was substituted off the field in the 24th minute after an opposing player inadvertently stepped on her left foot to cause the injury. The New Jersey side will be a bit depleted in terms of defenders this weekend, as Mandy Freeman will also miss the match after suffering a left ankle sprain on Saturday in a 3-2 win over FC Kansas City.
Sky Blue FC (7-6-1, 22 points) is seeking its first NWSL win over the Red Stars (7-3-3, 24), with the cumulative record standing at 0-5-6 overall and 0-3-2 in New Jersey. The last time these two clubs met was on June 25. Taylor Lytle and Madison Tiernan hooked up in the third minute, but the Red Stars rallied for a pair of second-half goals in a 2-1 victory.