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Despite resolve, NC Courage tops Washington Spirit, 4-2

Spirit forward Frannie Ordega dashes between Courage players Denise O’Sullivan (8) and Merritt Mathias (11), on her way to an on-target shot on goal, blocked by keeper Sabrina D’Angelo. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFESpirit forward Frannie Ordega dashes between Courage players Denise O’Sullivan (8) and Merritt Mathias (11), on her way to an on-target shot on goal, blocked by keeper Sabrina D’Angelo. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  BOYDS — Perfect weather did not bring perfect play to a tight match between the Washington Spirit (1-2-0) and the undefeated North Carolina Courage (3-0-0). In front of 3400-plus spectators, the visiting Courage robbed the Spirit of a home match win by 4-2.
Experts predicted the Spirit would be doing well to score a single goal against a team that has allowed no goals scored against them during regular season play. The Spirit surprised everyone by not only being the first team to score against the Courage, they did it in the first three minutes of the match.
Spirit forward and U.S. international player Mallory Pugh broke the clean-sheet streak of the Courage with the Spirit’s first goal. Courage keeper Sabrina D'Angelo did everything she could to block the unassisted shot by Pugh, but there’s no shame in losing to one the world’s most formidable forward players.

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Washington Spirit wounds Orlando’s Pride, 2-0

Washington Spirit’s Mallory Pugh (11) moves the ball deftly towards the goal with Orlando Pride’s Ali Krieger (11) right behind her trying to end the run. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFEWashington Spirit’s Mallory Pugh (11) moves the ball deftly towards the goal with Orlando Pride’s Ali Krieger (11) right behind her trying to end the run. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  In a startling outcome, the Washington Spirit (1-1-0) outplayed the Orlando Pride (0-1-1) this past Saturday in a 2-0 win over the visiting Orlando team. Playing in front of 4,989 spectators, the Spirit played a back-and-forth match of relatively even moves with the Pride until the 80th minute.
The Pride, failing to mark U.S. international player Mallory Pugh as tightly as they had earlier in the match, opened a canyon of space for Pugh. Pugh, with possession of the ball off a pass from Ashely Hatch, did what she usually does: maneuver the ball faster and better than everyone else on the pitch.
Pugh outran the Pride’s Alex Krieger, who was closing in from behind. She outpaced,Canadian international player Shelina Zadorsky, the Pride’s center back defender, who ran parallel to Pugh but unable to get close enough. At the last moment of open space between her and the net, she lit off a shot that nutmegged keeper Ashlyn Harris and stopped in the back of the net. She scored the first goal of the match in the 80th minute. The Spirit were ahead 1-0 over the Pride.

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Preseason match shines on a rookie

UNC’s Nicole Crutchfield rushes the ball while Washington Spirit’s Estefania Banini interferes with her progress. The two teams closed the match with a 1-1 draw. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFEUNC’s Nicole Crutchfield rushes the ball while Washington Spirit’s Estefania Banini moves to block. The two teams ended the match with a 1-1 draw. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  LEESBURG, VA — As the match started between the Washington Spirit and the University of North Carolina Tar Heels women’s soccer team at the Evergreen Soccer Complex, players who were not starters were bundled up in official Washington Spirit winter-ready warmup jackets. The starters were rubbing their hands together, donning gloves, their breath creating a fog in the air, jumping about to stay warm and loose.
By the end of two 45-minute periods of play, both teams were sweat-soaked, steaming in the cold air, and looking at a final score of 1-1. After the obligatory post-match handshakes, the players made a straight line for the locker rooms, skipping the warm down that usually follows. It was cold.
Preseason games are where rookies get their chance to earn a spot on the team while seasoned veterans need to prove they can retain their spot on the team. The Spirit opened their preseason playing against the Tar Heels, a team known for delivering national championships and professional players. They did not disappoint when playing the Spirit on this past Saturday.

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Bethesda-Chevy Chase defeats Severna Park to win boys soccer state title

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B CC Barons vs. Severna Park Falcons

BALTIMORE – The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons boys soccer team defeated the Severna Park Falcons Saturday evening at Loyola University's Ridley Athletic Complex with the final score 1-0, as a last-minute goal by senior forward Liam Brocker gave the Barons their first Maryland 4A championship in ten years.

The game-winning goal came three minutes after a heart-stopping moment for the Barons, when it had looked like Severna Park senior midfielder Keaton Bathras had scored, breaking the 0-0 stalemate that had prevailed for the previous 77 minutes.

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B-CC defeat Sherwood 1-0 to advance to state final

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B CC Barons vs. Sherwood WarriorsUPPER MARLBORO — The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons boys soccer team advanced to the Maryland state championship came on Saturday by defeating Sherwood Warriors 1-0 in a semifinal match held at Dr. Henry A. Wise, Jr. High School.

Following a scoreless first half, the Barons scored once in the second half and held on to secure their narrow victory.

“My boys played with a lot of heart today, discipline but everything else heart and love of each other,” said B-CC coach Gui Melendez. “That’s why we won, that simple.”

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B-CC boys soccer wins region with 3-0 victory over G’burg

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B CC Barons vs. Gburg TrojansROCKVILLE — The third seeded Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons boys soccer team advanced to the state semifinals Wednesday night at Richard Montgomery High School as they defeated the Gaithersburg Trojans 3-0.

Early on in the game, Gaithersburg controlled the pace of play. It was the Trojans who had the bulk of the early opportunities to score. However, each and every time that Gaithersburg launched an attack, the Barons defense stifled it.

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B-CC Barons defeat Churchill 2-0, advance to soccer regional finals

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B CC Barons vs. Churchill BulldogsROCKVILLE — The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons defeated the Churchill Bulldogs 2-0 in the third round of the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association’s boys varsity soccer playoffs Friday evening at Thomas S. Wootton High School.

Battling for a place in the regional finals, the Barons took control with a goal early in the first half. As the Bulldogs searched for a way back into the match, the Barons doubled their lead in the second half to secure the victory to progress to the regional final.

“My boys came out hungry, came out disciplined, and they had a will that said ‘we’re not going to lose tonight,” said B-CC head coach Gui Melendez.

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Soccer 4 Change provides a safe haven for vulnerable teens

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The happy chatter, mostly in Spanish, and the brightly-colored shirts mask the turmoil reeling within the 300 high school students who participate in Soccer 4 Change, Montgomery County Department of Recreation’s program for vulnerable young people.

The participants, who are touched by a world of drugs and violence, are learning “the value of teamwork, the value of working together and the value of setting goals,” said County Recreation Director Gabe Albornoz. “We are seeing kids that are engaged, coming out of their shells.”

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BCC Barons defeat Kennedy Cavaliers in first round playoffs, 2-0

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B CC vs. Kennedy boys soccer 10 26 17Kennedy Cavaliers' Jordy Cisneros (2) goes up against B-CC Barons’ Jack Tchantchuing (7). PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  BETHESDA – The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons defeated the John F. Kennedy Cavaliers at Walt Whitman High School Thursday evening in the boys varsity soccer first round playoffs, 2-0.

“I think we did pretty well today, we kept our composure but I still think we need to use our movements around the ball better so we can play into space,” said B-CC head coach Guillermo Melendez.

After a scoreless first half, the Barons found the net twice in the second half to progress to the second round of the playoffs.

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DC United’s last game at RFK ends in a loss 2-1 against NY Red Bulls

 DSC8432DC United'S Chris Korb collides with Red Bulls forward Gonzalo Verón while stopping the attack by Verón. Both players went to the ground, no foul called. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE

Despite a solid display of athleticism and more than a bit of aggression from both teams, DC United (9-20-5) was unable to leave Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium with one more win. In the last Major League Soccer match Sunday afternoon on the pitch at RFK in front of 41,418 spectators, the New York Red Bulls (14-12-8) defeated DC United 2-1.
Led by first-time captain Marcelo Sarvas, DC United opened the match with a parry-and-thrust attack that kept the Red Bulls on their side of the field more often than not. Each time the Red Bulls moved the ball onto the DC United’s side, DC responded by turning the ball back and moving the match back to the other end of the pitch.
The fires of frustration crept into the match ignited by a tangled dust-up between United’s forward Paul Arriola and Red Bulls defender Kemar Lawrence. Chasing the ball from opposite ends resulted in a loud, violent collision that brought both players to the ground, skidding across the end line and into advertising barriers surrounding the field. Arriola lay crumpled against the wall, not moving much.

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