While much of the U.S. Soccer fandom was watching MLS games or the English FA Community Sheild Match, The Washington Freedom won the 2007W-League Championship with a solid 3-1 win over the Atlanta Silverbacks.
Washington's Rebecca Moros scored a goal less than one minuted into the game with a floater over Atlanta's goalkeeper. U.S. international player Christie Welsh added a second goal with about five minutes left in the first half. The second goal resulted from a beautiful pass beyond the Atlanta back line from Sarah Huffman. Welsh met the ball behind the Atlanta defense placed the shot into the corner for a 2-0 lead going into the break.
Washington's final goal came with a just about five minutes left in the match, when 16-year-old Tiffany McCarty pounced on a poorly handled ball by Atlanta goalkeeper Courtney Cripps and put away Washington's thrid and final goal.
With women's soccer considering a move back into professional ranks, the quality of play is improving. There continues to be a fair bit of sloppy play, but part of it may be due to the lack of full-time attention that many of the W-League players can devote to training. Most of the players have day jobs (some of which is soccer coaching, but not all), which relegated their training to evenings and weekends. Some of the W-League players, though, are high school and college players, allowing them to sharpen and refine their skills during the summer in advance of college and high school seasons. Such opporutnities, in a professional training environment, means that the level of play in the high school and college ranks will continue to improve.
The W-League championship weekend did demonstrate quality play though and it will improve over time.
Congratulations to the Washington Freedom and to the Atlanta Silverbacks for their successful runs this year.
The W-League boasts 34 teams in the U.S. and Canada.