PISCATAWAY, N.J. – The National Women’s Soccer League season continued to slip away from Sky Blue FC as it remained winless in seven games after dropping a 1-0 decision to the Portland Thorns at Yurcak Field Saturday night.
The result left the reeling New Jersey side with a 0-5-2 record and only two out of a possible 21 points.
Midge Purce scored in the second half for the visitors.
Sky Blue came out composed in the first half, holding back the Thorns attack to only six shots on goal and two shots on target. Goalkeeper Didi Haracic did well in net to make two saves.
In the 14th minute, Sky Blue its their first chance on goal when Imani Dorsey played in a high cross to the head of Amandine Pierre-Louis, sending it wide of the right post into the hands of goalkeeper Britt Eckerstrom.
The first half saw possession bounce back and forth between the two teams and ended scoreless.
The hosts came out aggressive in the second half with a chance to lead in the 48th minute with a build-up play starting with Dorsey at midfield. Dorsey sent the ball through a seam to Jen Hoy, who quickly slipped it up to Savannah McCaskill on the left flank. McCaskill cut back to take a shot that was blocked by Katherine Reynolds.
Portland tallied the lone goal in the 69th minute after a shot deflection landed at the feet of Purce and she slipped the ball to the back the net for her first goal of the season.
In the 89th minute, Haracic kept the game at a one-goal difference, making an incredible save in a one-on-one situation against Purce.
Gina Lewandowski made her debut in a Sky Blue uniform in her first start of the season, playing a full 90 minutes at right back. Rookie Kenie Wright made her first appearance of her NWSL career, entering the match during stoppage time.
“Everyone’s been super welcoming, the whole club, the organization, and the girls have been very welcoming and friendly, so it was kind of an easy transition,” Lewandowski said. “I think we had a good performance, certain phases of the game we got dangerous going forward a couple times but we just need to get more consistency going forward … there were phases where we actually were the better team we just need to do that over a longer period of time.”
Sky Blue FC will have some time off before the team returns to face Utah Royals FC away in Sandy, Utah at the Rio Tinto Stadium June 15 at 10 p.m. The team will return home to face the Orlando Pride June 22 at 7 p.m.