Ottawa Fury News Release
Saturday, July 20, 2013
LAVAL, QC - After capturing the W-League Championship last season on penalty kicks, the Fury’s good fortune on kicks from the spot ran out in Laval on Saturday evening as the Comets downed the Fury 5-4 on penalties after the two sides played to a 1-1 draw through 120 minutes. Amandine Pierre-Louis, who scored the goal to help Laval defeat Ottawa in the regular season to capture the division title, scored the decisive penalty kick winner to send Laval to their first W-League Championship.
The Fury were winless against Laval during the regular season but came into Saturday’s showdown with a wave of momentum after an impressive 5-1 victory against Toronto mid-week. Laval, who became the first team to take the division title away from Ottawa in ten years, came out the better of the two sides in the first half. Fury captain Jasmine Phillips had to be sharp early to keep the game scoreless. Former Fury W-League player and Canadian International Christina Julien was brought down in the box and the Comets were awarded a penalty. Kelsey Wilson, who scored against the Fury on a penalty on July 10, stepped up to the spot and opened the scoring for the home side to put the Comets ahead in the 12th minute.
The goal gave Laval added energy as the pressed for a second, but Phillips stood tall in the Ottawa goal to keep the Comets lead to just one. Taylor Uhl produced the Fury’s best chance late in the first half, but her shot missed wide and Ottawa would head into the dressing room trailing 1-0 after the opening 45 minutes.
Whatever was discussed during halftime injected energy into the Fury attack as Lisa-Marie Woods would produce an early chance before Emily Gielnik would rattle a shot off the post from 20 yards. The continuous pressure would lead to an Ottawa corner where Woods picked out Tessa Gavilsky at the back post who headed the ball across to Emily Gielnik to pull the Fury level in the 56th minute.
For Gielnik, it was her second goal of the post-season and the Fury looked to be in the drivers seat. The pressure would continue leading to two straight corners for the Fury, but the Laval defense was on their game clearing a lose ball off the goal line to keep the game level. After owning the first 25 minutes of the second half, the Comets regained their first-half form, but both goalkeepers proved unbeatable for the duration of the half. With 90 minutes completed and the division rivals playing to a 1-1 stalemate, the game would head to extra time.
In the first 15 minutes of extra time the Fury’s Lauren Hughes would produce the best chance on goal, but her header went wide. Ottawa would again have the better of the scoring chances in the second stanza of extra time, but Woods’ header was saved and Gielnik would fire wide of the target. With both sides remained locked at 1-1 after 120 minute, the W-League Central Conference Championship would be decided on penalty kicks.
In the seventh round, the Fury’s Lauren Hughes hit the post and Amandine Pierre-Louis scored to end the defending champions’ run at a repeat in a heartbreaking 5-4 shootout loss.
For only the second time in five years the Fury will not participate in the W-League Final Four and the first time in three years that Ottawa will not play for the W-League Championship.