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Rodriguez lifts FC Kansas City to first win of season

Amy Rodriguez scored her third goal of the season to lift FC Kansas City past the Chicago Red Stars. (Photo Copyright Erica McCaulley for The Equalizer)

Both Chicago and Kansas City came into Wednesday’s game looking to rebound from weekend losses, and it was FC Kansas City got on the board early and were able hold on for their first win of the season.

Amy Rodriguez scored the game’s lone goal in the 9th minute, her third goal in four games for the Blues. Jen Buczkowski’s centering pass found Rodriguez in the 6-yard box, and Rodriguez’s shot had no trouble finding the back of the net as Karina LeBlanc’s attention was drawn to Buczkowski and she wasn’t positioned to stop the strike.

“Our first half performance was unacceptable,” Red Stars coach Rory Dames said. “We owe Red Stars fans an apology and it won’t happen again.”

Although Kansas City saw the bulk of the possession, Chicago did have several opportunities to equalize. Jen Hoy put the Blues backline under considerable pressure at times and nearly intercepted a back-pass intended for Nicole Barnhart in the 33rd minute.

Once again, finishing was a problem for Kansas City. Wednesday they did well to maintain possession but were unable to capitalize on their advantage. The Blues had several opportunities to extend the lead but their shots missed the target or fell right to LeBlanc.

Chicago was unable to hold up play long enough for the team to join in the attack. As a result many of their chances, especially in the first half, came from long-range. It will be interesting to see what adjustment Dames makes to try to jump start the team offensively in the next couple weeks until Christen Press and Melissa Tancredi arrive.

Box score

Chicago Red Stars (1-2-0, 3 pts) vs. FC Kansas City (1-2-1, 4pts)
April 30th, 2014 – Verizon Wireless Stadium (Kansas City, KS)

Goals by Half 1 2 F
CHI 0 0 0
FCKC 1 0 1

Scoring Summary
FCKC – Amy Rodriguez (Jen Buczkowski) 9’

Chicago: GK Karina LeBlanc, Kecia Morway, Julie Johnston, Samantha Johnson, Michelle Wenino (Hayley Brock 82’), Julianne Sitch (Jackie Santacaterina 76’), Zakiya Bywaters, Lori Chalupny (C), Vanessa DiBernardo, Adriana Leon (Alyssa Mautz 46’), Jen Hoy
Subs not used: Rachel Quon, Niki Read, Taylor Vancil
Kansas City: GK Nicole Barnhart, Leigh Ann Robinson, Becky Sauerbrunn (C), Nikki Phillips, Kassey Kallmann, Jenna Richmond, Jen Buczkowski, Erika Tymrak (Morgan Marlborough 78’), Frances Silva (Liz Bogus 60’), Lauren Holiday (Merritt Mathias 60’), Amy Rodriguez
Subs not used: Melissa Henderson, Sara Keane, Nia Williams

Misconduct Summary:
Referee: Josh Wilkens
Assistant Referees: Maggie Short, Kyle Atkins
Fourth Official: Devin Blazek
Weather: 54 degrees, cloudy
Attendance: 1679

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