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Thursday, February 29

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Soccer Tue Jul 27 2010

Red Stars Drop Second in a Row

Despite defeating the Boston Breakers (5-6-4) in Massachusetts five weeks prior, the Chicago Red Stars (4-7-5) could not complete the season series sweep as they fell to the Breakers, 3-1, on Sunday at Toyota Park.

Early goals by Breakers forward Kelly Smith set the tone for the remainder of the match as she wasted no time in netting goals in the 9th and 12th minute of play, deflating the Red Stars and the 3,673 fans in attendance. Just two minutes after her second goal, Smith also assisted Ifeoma Dieke's goal to take an overpowering 3-0 lead.

Trailing 3-0, the Red Stars were forced to modify their game-plan, making an early substitution with Kosovare Asllani replacing defender Natalie Spilger and the team adjusting their formation to a three-player defensive back line. The changes almost paid off in the 27th minute, with Red Stars defender Whitney Engen hitting the crossbar and Breakers goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher making the save.

Although the Red Stars did manage to get a goal back in the 80th minute by Asllani, it proved to be too little, too late.

On paper, the Red Stars appeared to have played the better game. Not only did they outshoot the Breakers, 18-7 (10 of which were on goal), but they also obtained three more corner kicks (5 to 2). Unfortunately, Boston's outbreak of three goals within a span of five minutes was all it took for the Red Stars to drop its seventh match of the season.

The Red Stars now embark on a three-game road trip, starting with a 6 p.m. match on Wednesday, July 28, against the Philadelphia Independence at West Chester, Pa. Despite currently standing second-to-last in the league, the Red Stars have eight more matches to prove the team is playoff-hungry.

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