Written by Johnny Keely
CHICAGO – Three goals in 65 minutes propelled Chicago to third place in the NWSL standings as the Red Stars defeated the Houston Dash 3-0 on Sunday night.
Chicago forward Sam Kerr hit the back of the net twice in the first half through assists from Morgan Brian and Yuki Nagasato. In the second half, Savannah McCaskill scored her first goal for the Red Stars by sprinting past defenders and tracking down a long Casey Short pass before hitting the ball past the Houston goalkeeper to make it 3-0. Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher made a terrific point-blank save to keep Houston’s offense at bay and earned her fourth clean sheet of the season.
7’ Morgan Brian hits a fantastic pass through the Houston defense that finds Kerr, and Kerr takes two touches and slots it past Jane Campbell to put Chicago up 1-0.
We took just a D N A T e S t t u r n z o u t We’re 1 0 0 % Here for @samkerr1 goals #HOUvCHI | #MKOT https://t.co/Aaz97qrhWZ
33’ A Houston corner leads to a quick Rachel Daly shot from close-range but Alyssa Naeher leaps to make an impressive reflexive save to keep the visitors scoreless.
38’ Sarah Gorden flashes into open space down the right flank and hits a low cross toward Kerr who tries to lay the ball off to Yuki Nagasato but it trickles just past the Chicago winger.
40’ Lindsay Agnew fouls Savannah McCaskill on the right side of Houston’s penalty area. A free-kick is whipped in and Kerr gets solid contact and directs it toward goal but Cambell makes a great save and Rachel Daly clears it off the line.
44’ Tierna Davidson intercepts a pass which starts a Red Stars break the other way and ends with Yuki Nagasato finding Sam Kerr at the top of the box where she cooly puts it in the back of the net for her second goal of the game.
65’ McCaskill shows off her speed and effort for her first Red Stars goal. Short sends a ball in McCaskill’s direction, but with plenty of defenders to beat in her path. McCaskill speeds past the Houston defense and toe pokes the ball past a charging Campbell and into the back of the net.
80’ Cece Kizer cuts inside and unleashes a rocket toward the upper left-hand corner of the Red Stars goal but it hits the crossbar.
- Chicago loved to strike early against the Dash. With Kerr’s goal in the seventh minute, the Red Stars scored a goal within the first ten minutes of every game played against Houston this season.
- Sam Kerr’s two goals put her at 15 for the season and firmly at the top of the NWSL Golden Boot rankings.
- It’s only fitting that the NWSL’s assist leader linked up with the NWSL leading scorer. Yuki Nagasato’s assist to Kerr tonight gives her the league-wide lead in assists this season with six.
- Savannah McCaskill’s 65th-minute strike was her first goal for Chicago and the fourth of her NWSL career.
- Sam Kerr’s goal in the seventh minute was Chicago’s 10th goal in the first 15 minutes of a match this season.
- Julie Ertz made a team-high five interceptions while helping her team to their sixth shutout of the season.
Chicago takes a trip to the sunshine state to take on the Orlando Pride on Wednesday, September 11 at Exploria Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:00 pm C.T.
Chicago Red Stars vs Houston Dash
September 8, 2019
SeatGeek Stadium (Bridgeview, IL)
Goals by Half 1 2 F
Chicago Red Stars 2 1 3
Houston Dash 0 0 0
CHI: Sam Kerr (Morgan Brian) 7’
CHI: Sam Kerr (Yuki Nagasato) 44’
CHI: Savannah McCaskill (Casey Short) 65’
HOU: Lindsay Agnew (Yellow Card) 39’
CHI: Yuki Nagasato (Yellow Card) 90’
HOU: GK Cambell, D Agnew (Nairn 45’), D Brooks, D Prisock, D Murray (Romero 45’), M Schmidt, M Hanson, M Huerta, F Ohai © (Kizer 68’), F Mewis, F Daly
CHI: GK Naeher, D Short, D Ertz ©, D Gorden, D Davidson, M Colaprico, M Brian (Stanton 74’), M DiBernardo, F Nagasato, F McCaskill (Johnson 79’), F Kerr (Elby 69’)
All statistics contained in this box score are unofficial.