Carli Lloyd scored for the second consecutive match for Sky Blue FC, but it wasn’t enough. (Andy Mead/YCJ Photo)
SANDY, Utah – Sky Blue FC’s descent into National Women’s Soccer League hell continued Saturday night as it remained winless in 13th games.
The New Jersey team dropped a 3-1 decision at Utah Royals FC at Rio Tinto Stadium.
Sky Blue FC (3 points) fell to 0-10-3 while Utah (21) improved to 5-3-6.
“We were playing on heavy legs and started a bit too slowly tonight,” Sky Blue FC head coach Denise Reddy said. “We were being a little too defensive, and it felt like we were chasing the game after giving up the early goal. However, we stepped up as an 11 in the second half. We were playing at a much higher level, and definitely with a greater effort as well.”
Utah Royals FC opened up the scoring in the 7th minute, as Katrina Gorry played a ball into the box from the right flank. The feed was deflected by Gunnhildur Jonsdottir before rolling onto the feet of Christen Press, who finished.
The lead was extended to 2-0 in the 25th minute after Samantha Johnson gathered possession in the midfield. She played Press, who struck a through-ball into the penalty area. Katie Stengel chipped the feed into the back of the net.
Three minutes later, Gorry struck the ball towards the far post to Stengel, who headed it for a 3-0 advantage.
Sky Blue FC pulled one back in the 62nd minute. Sarah Killion picked off an errant pass in the midfield and headed it to Janine Beckie, who sped towards the final third before playing Shea Groom into the penalty area. Groom cut back on a defender and fired a shot that was kick-saved by goalkeeper Abby Smith. Imani Dorsey collected the rebound who one-touched a feed for Carli Lloyd on top of the 18. Despite falling backwards, Lloyd maintained her balance well enough to send a left-footed curler into the left-side netting. Lloyd scored for the second consecutive match. The assist by Dorsey was her first professional point.
Sky Blue FC will return home to Yurcak Field to host the Chicago Red Stars Saturday at 7 p.m.