D.C. United Ready For Weekend
D.C. United Women News Release - www.dcunitedwomen.com
Friday, July 20, 2012
GERMANTOWN, MD - D.C. United Women (11-0-1) will meet the Virginia Beach Piranhas (6-3-3) for a fourth time this season on Saturday evening at the Maryland SoccerPlex, this time with the highest stakes yet - the winner will move on to the Eastern Conference Championship Final while the loser will see its season come to an end.
The Eastern Conference’s No. 1 seed D.C. United Women won two of three matches against the Piranhas during the regular seasn and tied the other 1-1 in a hard-fought battle at the SoccerPlex on June 23. Both of D.C.’s wins over Virginia Beach came in shutout fashion, including a 2-0 win on opening night and a 3-0 win in United Women’s regular season finale last weekend. The team is on the cusp of completing an historic undefeated 2012 campaign in only its second season of existence, but still has a few major road blocks between them and the W-League Championships in Ottawa next weekend.
Despite the Black-and-Red’s recent success against Virginia Beach, D.C. Head Coach Mike Jorden is not expecting an easy game when United Women meet the Piranhas Saturday night at 6 p.m. ET at the SocccerPlex. (Tickets at: https://tickets.dcunitedwomen.com)
"In our case we’ve got to be careful because we’ve had success against them, even though they drew us a few weeks ago but we can’t be too confident," Jorden told dcunitedwomen.com Friday afternoon. "They’re athletic and they’re very quick and they put a lot of pressure on you defensively."
Although United Women blanked the Piranhas 3-0 on the road last Saturday night, Jorden said that game may not be indicative of what Virginia Beach can bring to the table. During that match, the Piranhas were less than 24 hours from playing a winner-take-all match against Fredericksburg for the Eastern Conference’s last playoff spot, and seemed to be tuning up for their big day ahead.
"I think we learned more from when we drew with them than when we beat them last week," said Jorden. "We learned we have to move the ball faster and we have to press them when they have the ball because they’re very direct in their approach."
Virginia Beach traveled to Fredericksburg on Sunday and secured its spot in the Eastern Conference Championship, beating the Impact 2-0 in a weather-shortened game on goals by Emily Kittleson and Esther Anyanwu, and a perfect game in net by goalkeeper Marbel Egwuenu. Since falling to 0-2-0 on May 20, the Piranhas have lost only one league match.
This week in training, as the team prepares for its first W-League postseason appearance, D.C. United Women’s coaching staff has kept the atmosphere loose but competitive at the same time. The team, composed of a balanced mixture of veterans and newcomers, is excited to continue to pursue an undefeated season and eventually bring a W-League title back to D.C. for their dedicated fans who have done their best to ’Pack the Plex’ all season long.
"As a coaching staff and as a team, we want to thank our fans for the great season we’ve had," said coach Jorden. "We’ve seen a lot more interest in getting our name out there in this second season and with the fact that we’ve had success, it’s been great. Seeing the young female soccer players come out and enjoy the games has been especially good to see, and tomorrow I hope we have the biggest crowd of the season."
The winner of the match will return to the 4,000-capacity Maryland SoccerPlex Stadium on Sunday at 4 p.m. ET in the Eastern Conference Championship to take on the winner of the other semifinal, which pits the Charlotte Lady Eagles against the Long Island Rough Riders. The No. 3 seed Rough Riders (9-3-0), champions of the Northeast Division, face the two-seed Southeast Division champion Lady Eagles (9-1-2) Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET in the first leg of the Eastern Conference Championship Semifinals doubleheader at the SoccerPlex.
For tickets to this weekend's action please visit https://tickets.dcunitedwomen.com.