Charlotte Independence USL W League Team Earns First Win in History
CHARLOTTE, NC – The Charlotte Independence USL W League team won its first game in history by defeating the North Carolina Fusion 4-0 at American Legion Memorial Stadium. The Independence were led by #20 Ayden Yates who scored two goals on the day.
The Independence started on the front foot early, earning the first six corners of the first half in just the 2nd minute.
Charlotte was unable to score a goal from the initial corner, but it didn’t take long for Yates to put the Independence on the board.
Charlotte’s first goal of the game came in the 8th minute from Yates who notched her first of the season. #11 Sutton Webb attempted a cross into the box. The Fusion defense cleared the pass, but only as far as #8 Zoe Susi. Susi passed to #15 Kelly Flanders who took a shot from the top of the box, her shot took a deflection and fell right to Yates who gave Charlotte an early 1-0 lead.
Yates doubled the Independence’s lead just before both teams went into the locker rom. Just as the match went into first half stoppage time, Susi got the ball on the left side of the box, and crossed the ball perfectly into the path of Yates who volleyed the ball into the bottom right corner to take a 2-0 lead into halftime.
To start the second half, Charlotte made two substitutions. #12 Eveleen Hahn and #17 Lily Suyao came on for #27 Michaela Deas and #6 Gabby Johnson to start the final 45 minutes.
The Independence got on the front foot early, forcing a save from the Fusion keeper and earning the team’s seventh corner kick of the match just into the second half. #16 Kennedy Jones came inches away from scoring her first goal of the season, but the Fusion keeper tipped her effort onto the crossbar in the 51st minute.
Charlotte added to the lead when Jones was pulled down in the box in the 60th minute and was awarded a penalty kick. Jones stepped up to the spot herself and buried her first goal of the season to take a 3-0 lead heading into the final 30 minutes.
The Fusion earned its best chance of the game in the 65th minute when #11 Annabelle Walker took a shot near the post but Abigail Stapleton made the save to keep the clean sheet. The Independence attack kept pressing, forcing multiple saves from the Fusion. It was #19 Alexandra Odle who made the Fusion pay late into the match to make it 4-0. The Independence earned a corner kick that fell to Odle just on the edge of the box and she shot it into the back of the net to finish the match off and earn the Independence’s first win of the season.
Next on the schedule: The Charlotte Independence USL W League Team will be in action again on Saturday, May 2 at 4:30 PM to take on Wake FC on the road. Fans can watch the match on Eleven Sports.