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Last Gasp Goal Not Enough, As The Independence Lose WPS Final To The Flash On PKs

Amy Rodriguez's 88th minute goal gave the Philadelphia Independence new hope, as the team pulled even with the Western New York Flash at the end of regular time. It would be for naught, as the Independence eventually fell to the Flash on penalty kicks to lose the 2011 WPS Championship,


An incredibly defensive first half left the score at 0-0, but there were some lowlights to take from those 45 minutes. Independence offensive stalwart, and former American international, Tasha Kai was elbowed in the face while trying for a header and wasn't the same the rest of the game. Kai admitted around half time that she had suffered a concussion, though it was not clear whether or she self-diagnosed or had received that information from a doctor or team trainer.

Other rash tackles and physical challenges led to the whistle being blown often, until the game started to open up in the second half. Players began to get tired and the stars were able to influence the game.

Marta, Alex Morgan, Christine Sinclair, Amy Rodriguez and Veronica Boquete made the game interesting, with some back and forth play that would lead to the Flash scoring the first goal of the match. Sinclair clinically finished a pass from Candace Chapman into the right side of the goal in the 64th minute.

Rodriguez and the Independence fired back in the 88th minute, as the lightning quick striker picked up on a rebound at a very acute angle in front of the Flash net. Her shot was deflected into the opposite corner to give the Independence a new hope.

Two 15 minute halves in overtime were mostly in the Independence's favor after Beverly Goebel was sent off for a second yellow card in the 108th minute. Still, neither side could score a goal.

The game went to penalty kicks, where the Flash outdid the Independence 5-4, when Laura del Rio placed her penalty right at the Flash's Ashlyn Harris.