Central Region Playoffs:
Fortuna Tulsa vs Salvo SC
For the hosts in Salvo SC the playoffs, and their season did not end the way they wanted or hoped. It would be the designated home side Fortuna Tulsa coming out with a 2-0 win in the first of the two WPSL Central Region Semi-Final matches.
Fairly early on Fortuna opened up the scoring when Roman Langer sent a pass to the middle of the 18 yard box where Siera Schwarz took it to the top of the 6 before putting it past Salvo GK Kaitlin Maxwell into the right side of the net. Jordan Langebartels put in the second goal of the match at 45+2’ securing Fortuna Tulsa a win and a match on Sunday afternoon.
Utah Royals FC Reserves vs Fire & Ice
The second Semi-Final ended with the same 2-0 scoreline as the first, this one also with the designated home side, Utah Royals FC Reserves winning. The difference was unlike the first match, both of these goals came in the 2nd half.
Hailey North scored first in the 52nd minute to put URFC Reserves up 1-0. Teammate Cameron Tucker scored just 7 minutes later in the 59th to give URFC Reserves their second goal. Fire & Ice would more resemble the Ice part of their name in the opening Semi-Final with not being able to score and losing their third game of 2019 to end their campaign.
Fortuna Tulsa vs Utah Royals FC Reserves
The two teams in this match-up were the odds on favorites in their Semi-Finals and showed why in their matches on Saturday. After both Fortuna Tulsa and Utah Royals FC Reserves scoring shutouts on Saturday afternoon, Sunday would prove different. A tight match that didn't see either team give up would ultimately end with URFC Reserves scoring a 2-1 win over Fortuna Tulsa.
Similar to the Semi-Final against Fire & Ice it took a while for URFC to find the goal but it was Mikayla Colohan scoring off a corner in the 39th minute. Colohan would notch her second goal of the afternoon to complete the brace with a header off another corner in the 44th minute. Tulsa didn't give up and after a few minutes of trying in and around the box is would be Aubrey Lechlider putting a header in for Fortuna’s only goal of the match.
Elsewhere in the WPSL:
St. Paul wasn’t the only place holding a WPSL Playoff Regional on Saturday and Sunday. The East Region was hosted at the Ultimate Soccer Arena in Pontiac, MI by Motor City FC. After two blowout Semi-Finals that saw Midwest Conference Champion, Chicago Red Stars Reserves defeat Metropolitan Conference Champion NJ Wizards SC Cedar Stars (yes it’s a long one) by a score of 6-0. Host club and Ohio Valley Conference Champion Motor City FC defeated Mid-Atlantic Conference representative Torch FC by an identical 6-0 score. The East Region finals could not be decided in 90 minutes and took extra time to see the hosts Motor City FC take down Chicago Red Stars Reserves 4-2.
The South Region saw a relocated Regional Tournament, originally schedule to be held in Pensacola it was moved to Jacksonville, FL and Matthews, NC due to Tropical Storm Berry. Gulf Conference Champion and original host Pensacola FC traveled to Jacksonville, FL to take on Sunshine Conference rep FC Surge. It wasn't to be Surge’s night as Pensacola had a big 4-1 win at “home”. With the relocation of the Regional, Carolinas Conference champion Charlotte Lady Eagles got another chance to play at home. They would host Southeast Conference champion Chattanooga Red Wolves SC. The Lady Eagles used the extra home match to their advantage winning 1-0 over Chattanooga. Pensacola traveled north to Matthews, NC to play the Lady Eagles. This time Charlotte’s home pitch wouldn't help them as Pensacola FC won 3-1 to take home the South Region Championship and a trip to Oklahoma.
Lastly but not in the very least was the West Region, hosted by FC Golden State at Rio Hondo College. The Coastal Conference champions and hosts FC Golden State would fall in their Semi-Final to Pac-North Conference Champion California Storm 2-0. Northwest Conference and 2018 WPSL Champion Seattle Sounders Women played the Pac-South Conference champion San Diego SeaLions in the second West Region Semi-Final. In what seemed to be a common score in the Western two regionals, Sounders Women won 2-0 over San Diego. In the West Region Final and the final match of the weekend Sounders Women secured another trip to Oklahoma with a huge 4-0 win over the California Storm.
This weekend all four teams will meet at Neal Patterson Stadium in Stillwater, OK for the 2019 WPSL National Championship. Pensacola FC will face off against Sounders Women and Motor City FC will play Utah Royals FC Reserves on Friday night. The two winners on Friday night will play on Sunday afternoon for the Jerry Zanelli Cup. Look for our National Championship recap later this week with our recap of the Semi-Finals and Finals next week.