Pre-match report #1: at Elite Girls Academy

OMAHA, NEBRASKA — FC Wichita begins their 2019 regular seasons late in their third season of the Women’s Professional Football League. They’re in Omaha, Nebraska to play the Elite Girls Academy.

FC Wichita lost in their season finale last season 1-0 to Tulsa Fortuna. So, it’s a new season, with new expectations for the ladies in blue. FC Wichita will play in a new conference so, expectations change, with the exception a championship is always the end goal.

Back in the coaching box is Sammy Lane, the legendary Wichita coach. He’s a tough gaffer but he knows how to get the job done. He’s the only head coach FC Wichita has ever known and for good reason. He’s a proven winner as his time at Hutchinson Community College has shown.

Another FC Wichita staple is Jami Reichenberger in net. The Bishop Carroll alum is nothing but a brick wall in net. Her consistency in net also, like Lane, the only keeper FC Wichita has really known. She provides a calm manner about her and it allows the defense to be the dominators we’ve come to expect.

Also returning to FC Wichita is Brookelynn Entz (Kansas State), Ashley Zane (Kansas State), Dora Gallo (Kansas State), Peyton Vincze (Oklahoma State), Hayden Burnett (UMKC), and Rachel Vanbuskirk (Newman).

There are some fresh faces as well, such as Shekinah Flores (Friends), Jami Althiser (Northern Iowa), Mekena Schroeder (Newman) and Madison Wingler (Kansas State).

The Elite Girls Academy might not be well known in the WPSL world but in the world of women’s soccer, they’ve helped produce a ton of Division I talent and are known for putting a very good product on the field.

The kickoff is scheduled for 11:30 p.m. Unfortunately, there is no stream, so we’ll do our best to provide updates on our social media pages.

FC Wichita announces 2019 regular season schedule

WICHITA — FC Wichita will kick off their schedule on May 19 in Nebraska, Omaha against Elite Girls Academy at 11:30 a.m.

This season, FC Wichita is playing in the Heartland Conference. They’ll play a slew of different opponents.

After playing in Omaha, FC Wichita travels to Springfield, Missouri to play SFG Lady Demize on May 30. The women’s match kicks off at 4:15 p.m., with the men’s match kicking off at 7:30 p.m.

FC Wichita will face a back-to-back on Saturday, June 1, and on Sunday, June 2. They’ll play the 2017 WPSL Champions, the Saint Louis Lions in St. Peters, Missouri on Saturday. Then, they’ll cross the mighty Mississippi to play Fire & Ice WPSL on Sunday.

FC Wichita will have their first home match on June 8 on against SFG Lady Demize at the newly renovated Stryker Soccer Stadium. The women kick-off at 4 p.m. and the men at 7:30 p.m.

To complete their second back-to-back as they travel to Rockhurst University the following to play KC Courage. FC Wichita beat the Courage 3-0 in 2017 in their only meeting.

FC Wichita takes a step out of conference play to play Oklahoma City FC on June 14 at 7 p.m. at Mid-America University. Oklahoma City FC and FC Wichita played together in the Southwest Conference for two seasons. FC Wichita is 3-1-0 all-time against OKC FC.

FC Wichita will finish out their regular season slate with four straight home matches. They’ll host Fire & Ice WPSL on Saturday, June 22. Then, they’ll host Saint Louis Lions on June 23. FC Wichita will have a mid-week match against the KC Courage on Wednesday June 26. They’ll wrap up the regular season against Elite Girls Academy on Saturday, July 6.

Complete Regular Season Schedule:

all times are Wichita local

DATEOPPONENTLOCATIONTIME
Sunday, May 19at Elite Girls AcademyCaniglia Field – Omaha, Neb.11:30 a.m.
Thursday, May 30at SFG Lady DemizeCooper Stadium – Springfield, Mo.4 p.m.
Saturday, June 1at St. Louis LionsTony Glavin Soccer Complex – St. Peters, Mo.5 p.m.
Sunday, June 2at Fire & Ice WPSLAlthoff Catholic High School – Belleville, Ill.2 p.m.
Saturday, June 8SFG Lady DemizeStryker Soccer Stadium4 p.m.
Sunday, June 9at KC CourageRockhurst University Field – Kansas City, Mo.5 p.m.
Friday, June 14at Oklahoma City FCMid-America University – OKC, Okla.7 p.m.
Saturday, June 22Fire & Ice WPSLStryker Soccer Stadium4 p.m.
Sunday, June 23St. Louis LionsStryker Soccer Stadium2 p.m.
Wed., June 26KC CourageStryker Soccer Stadium7 p.m.
Saturday, July 6Elite Girls AcademyStryker Soccer Stadium2:30 p.m.

FC Wichita moves into Heartland Conference

WICHITA — For the first two seasons of existence, FC Wichita has been in the middle of of the South Region, in the Southwest Conference. That changes in 2019. FC Wichita will now compete in the Heartland Conference in the WPSL.

While not affiliated with the men’s conference, it will provide some formality to the women’s side.

Sure, FC Wichita, in the Southwest. Things worked out. It was centrally located for the most part, other than the trips south to Dallas a couple times a season. There was Oklahoma City and Tulsa. Though, the travel seemed a bit out of sorts compared to the men’s squad, the ladies powered through.

Instead of south, the travel will be centrally located. FC Wichita’s first match is against Elite Girls Academy, which resides in Omaha, Nebraska. They’ll also travel to Belleville, Illinois to play Fire and Ice WPSL. Trips to Saint Louis, Kansas City and Springfield, Missouri are on the docket as well.

FC wichita begins their regular season schedule on the road in Omaha, Nebraska on May 19. The complete schedule will be released at a future date.

They return home for their first match at the newly renovated Stryker Soccer Stadium on June 8 against SFG Lady Demize, the women’s club of the Demize NPSL.

FC Wichita is 11-7-2 overall in their two first two seasons.

FC Wichita adds friendly

WICHITA — As FC Wichita is preparing for their third season, they’re continuing to put together their regular season schedule.

FC Wichita and Oklahoma City FC have agreed to a friendly on July 14, 2019 at Mid-America Christian University in Moore, Oklahoma.

FC Wichita were conference foes for the first two seasons in FCW’s existence. However, re-alignment has moved FC Wichita into the Heartland Conference. As now both the men’s and women’s teams play in the same conference.

Wichita and Oklahoma City are scheduled for a 7 p.m. kickoff.

FC Wichita ends season with loss to Fortuna

After a couple rough outings for the ladies in blue, FC Wichita was ready for a comeback game. With a full bench and a packed Trinity Stadium, this game had all the ingredients for a season finale. That result did not hold true as Fortuna Tulsa came out on top 1-0.

The first ten minutes were controlled by Fortuna, getting four shots up and a corner kick opportunity as well. FC Wichita was looking for answers in the midfield early.

FC Wichita finally got a corner chance in the 11th minute, their first real offensive chance thus far. They couldn’t convert but kept their foot on the gas pedal, getting two more corner kick chances just minutes later.

While the game remained scoreless, FC Wichita carried most of the momentum into the following minutes, getting a couple more shots on net as well as a couple more corner kicks. Despite many good chances, the game remained scoreless.

In the 26th minute, Fortuna had two great chances, the first impossibly saved by goalkeeper Jami Reichenberger. The second shot went off the right goal post and out of play.

FC Wichita quickly flipped the field, getting a ball down inside to Katie Cramer, who made a fantastic turn but mishit the shot, sending it over the net. Minutes later, Brooklyn Entz received a ball deep in the zone, found some open space but her shot was met by a defender’s leg.

Each team had one more opportunity a piece in the half, but both shots were off the mark to keep the game scoreless at halftime.

In the first five minutes of the half, Fortuna had two corner kick chances but could not convert on either. In the 52nd minute, FC Wichita returned the offensive attacks with two of their own, but both halted to a stop as Tulsa forced turnovers in the box.

In the next 10 minutes, Reichenberger found four saves to keep Fortuna off the board.

In the 61st minute, Fortuna found the back of the net following a good cross and an even better header by Jordan Langebartels.

The next ten minutes were controlled by FC Wichita, who had seven separate opportunities and two corners as well, but continued to lose possession in the box.

Now entering the 70th minute, both teams knew the end was close but the game was not over. Fortuna played a much more possession based game, possessing the ball for about 80 percent of the last 20 minutes.

In the 84th minute, FC Wichita had a free kick about 40 yards out. The initial kick was good but the final touch in the box was by a Fortuna defender, ending the chance.

As the 90th minute drew on, Wichita formed one last attack, but were once again stopped by the Fortuna defensive line.

“Today is very disappointing, we would have love to have won with a great crowd here at home.” said Head Coach Sammy Lane.

The 0-1 loss dropped FC Wichita to 4-4-1 for 13 points in the conference. The win elevated Fortuna Tulsa to 4-2-4 for 16 points. Fortuna now own the all time series 2-0-0. FC Wichita dropped to 3-1-0 at home this season with the loss.

Regardless of the result Saturday, the season was a success in the eyes of coaches and players alike.

“Honestly, this was such a great opportunity,” said Rachel VanBuskirk. “It’s just been such an honor to play with these girls.”

Lane was optimistic on the future of Women’s soccer here in Wichita.

“Having young players like [Nayeli Gallo] join the team is what this is all about,” said Lane. “That why we do what we do here.”

Pre-Match Report: FC Wichita vs. Fortuna Tulsa

Trinity Academy Stadium | Directions
Gates open: 3:00 p.m. | Kick-off: 4:00 p.m.
Tickets: Available at the gate or online
Parking: FREE

FC Wichita
2018 WPSL Record: 4-3-1 | 3-0-0 home | 13 points
Form: WWLLD

Fortuna Tulsa
2018 WPSL Record: 3-2-4 | 0-1-3 away | 13 points
FORM: WLDDD

Preview

FC Wichita hasn’t been home in forever and are finally back at Trinity Stadium to wrap up the regular season fixtures. Today’s match is sponsored by Wheat State Insurance and Harbor House.

Harbor House at Catholic Charities is there to help break the cycle of violence against women and children. They provide a safe place to stay and the best support services, not limited to counseling, housing referrals, domestic violence education and other life skills. Harbor House does the best ability of utilizing outreach to guide victims of abuse through their Judicial, medical and DCF systems. Harbor House works with women and their children, as well as men, to help them realize a life can be free from abuse and fill them with hope and promise.

FC Wichita and Wheat State Insurance Group have joined together to raise money and donations for Harbor House and their fight against domestic violence. Items requested are not limited to: Socks (must be new), underwear (must be new), bath towels (must be new), hand downs (must be new), laundry detergent, women’s PJs, small kitchen appliances (can be used), paper towels, toilet paper, toothbrushes, canned food, boxed food.

Here’s a link of all drop off locations if you’re unable to attend the match. The donations to Harbor House do not stop at the gate.

With every donation, Kennton Hoffman and Wheat State Insurance Group will match all donations.

So, there’s also a soccer match going on. FC Wichita will host Fortuna Tulsa for the first time in Tulsa’s young history.

FC Wichita is coming off a tough 1-1 draw in Little Rock, Arkansas. Their first trip to Arkansas saw the ladies in blue fight to the very end. After falling behind early in the match, FC Wichita’s Dora Gallo scored in added time to equalize the match from 25 yars outside of the box.

Tulsa also drew their last match, a 2-2 draw with Oklahoma City FC on Monday, July 2.

FC Wichita and Fortuna Tulsa have played once this season, a 2-0 win for Fortuna on June 9 in Tulsa. Fortuna has drawn their last three matches and haven’t won a conference match since June 17.

Fortuna in their first season is coached by Michael Wilson. Wilson came to Fortuna as the head coach of Waldorf University (Iowa). Currently, he’s the head coach at Tulsa Union (OK) High school.

Fortuna isn’t led by just one player. They’ve had at least six different players find the back of the net this season.

If you’re unable to make the match, Johnny Freedom and Zach Light will have your broadcast on Youtube. But come down and support your ladies the wrap up their regular season schedule at Trinity Stadium.

FC Wichita draws with Little Rock

Traveling to Little Rock, Arkansas for their second game in three days, FC Wichita was fired up to get back on track. Wichita came into the game after losing their last two games, including Thursday night’s contest with FC Dallas. FC Wichita drew 1-1 with Little Rock thanks to a last minute goal by Dora Gallo.

Little Rock tested FC Wichita defensively, putting continuous pressure on Wichita’s defensive line and goalkeeper. Just four minutes in, Little Rock had their first corner of the game following the first of many great saves by Wichita keeper Jami Reichenberger.

While Little Rock could not score on the initial corner kick chance, the second ball in was headed into the back of the net by Anika Kallash, giving Little Rock an early lead. FC Wichita began getting opportunities at this point, getting two or three chances in the next eight minutes.

In the 13th minute, Reichenberger kept her great day going, with a punch save to send a ball over the net. This gave the Rangers a corner kick chance but they could not convert.

Three minutes later, FC Wichita got their first shot on target of the day, but it was sent right at the keeper. In the 22nd minute, Jami made another easy save, which sent the game to the first half water break.

In the 29th minute, Wichita had their best chance of the game thus far, but the shot was just late and hit a defenders foot. Five minutes later, Reichenberger saved another chip shot with a jumping punch save over the net.

FC Wichita had their first corner of the game in the 35th minute, but could not convert. Wichita did not have another ball in the offensive third the whole half after this point.

The half ended with Little Rock still leading, 1-0. Reichenberger recorded 15 saves in the first half and Little Rock took 24 shots.

The first 10 minutes of the second half were much like the first half. Little Rock controlled possession very well, giving no chanced to Wichita in this time.

At the 56 minute mark, D. Gallo’s shot was stopped by a diving Rangers keeper, resulting in a corner kick for Wichita. Off the corner, Peyton Eskridge had a nice shot just saved by a Little Rock defender.

The next five minutes were extreme back and forth soccer. The Rangers answered the FC Wichita corner with one of their own. They could not convert and Wichita formed a nice counter attack the other way. A good ball gave Wichita a great one on one with the keeper, but they were called offsides.

Wichita did not have another opportunity all the way to the second half water break in the 69th minute. In this time, Little Rock put seven shots up, six of them saved by Reichenberger.

FC Wichita had a great chance with a free kick just outside the 18-yard mark at the corner of the box. The free kick had too much air under it, sending it over the crossbar. Although the free kick was no good, the momentum had switched to Wichita’s side. Another great strike in the 86th minute was just saved by the Rangers keeper.

Finally, in the second minute of stoppage time, Dora Gallo received a ball in the midfield, about 25 yards out. She took two touches before firing a shot toward the lower right corner of the net. The shot was touched by the Rangers keeper, but not enough as the ball slowly rolled over the end line and into the back of the net.

Wichita defended another two minutes to keep the game at 1-1 and steal a point in Little Rock with the draw.

FC Wichita (4-3-1) returns home for their season finale this Saturday at Trinity Academy. The game is set for a 4:00 p.m. start time against Fortuna Tulsa(3-2-3). Tulsa defeated Wichita in their other contest this season in Tulsa and own the all time series record 1-0-0. You can buy your tickets here.

 

WOMEN OF THE MATCH

Dora Gallo

Gallo delivered the game tying goal in the 92nd minute. She has stepped up big recently for the FC Wichita offensive core.

BY THE NUMBERS

13

Little Rock attempted 13 corner kick on Saturday night. This is by far the most FC Wichita has faced in a single game all season.

44

The Rangers put 44 shots on the board. This made Jami Reichenberger’s life more difficult than usual, keeping her on her toes.

28

Jami Reichenberger recorded 28 saves Saturday night, a season high for her. Her performance kept the ladies in blue close enough to tie it late and take home the draw.

 

By: Matthew Will

Pre-Match Report: FC Wichita at Little Rock Rangers

When: Saturday, June 30 :: 5:00 p.m. CST
Where:War Memorial Stadium | Little Rock, Arkansas
Social MediaTwitter | Facebook
View from the enemyHere.
Online Stream: Here

FC Wichita
2018 WPSL Record: 4-3-0, 12 points
Form: WWWLL

Little Rock Rangers
2018 WPSL Record: 0-7-1, 1 point
FORM: LLLLD

Preview

FC Wichita (4-3-0) hits the road for the last time this season, to finish the season series with the Little Rock Rangers (0-7-1). In their first game of the year, Wichita defeated the Rangers 7-1 at Trinity Academy.

Both teams desperately want a win this weekend. FC Wichita enters the game following a 3-2 loss to FC Dallas. Wichita’s two goals were scored by newcomers, who were both playing their first game in the Wichita blue.

Little Rock enters the game following a 0-0 draw with Fortuna Tulsa, earning their first point of the season. Little Rock had an opportunity to win in the 66th minute on  penalty kick but it was stopped by the Tulsa keeper. While Little Rock does not have a win in regular season conference play, they do have a couple friendly wins, both against Lady Demise. Those wins are highlighted by the offense of Anika Kallash.

FC Wichita has relied on their offense this season, and will need even more production in their final two games. There have been many different goal scorers and offensive threats as the season has continued. If they can get one or two forwards going, they will get back on track and keep putting goals on the scoreboard.

Players to Watch FOr

Little Rock Rangers: Anika Kallash

Kallash scored three times in Little Rock’s win in a friendly over Lady Demise last week. They will need some production from her to secure a conference win.

FC Wichita:  Hayden Burnett

For the first time this season, the “player to watch for” is a midfielder. The past two games, FC Wichita has struggled to move the ball into the offensive third. If the midfielders, headlined by Burnett, can control the ball and push it up field, Wichita can get more offensive chances and help their forwards and wingers score.

FC Wichita falls against FC Dallas

The math was simple. Beat FC Dallas to keep conference title hopes alive, lose or draw and FC Dallas wins the conference.

It was FC Dallas who came out on top after a hard fought 90 minutes, winning 3-2 over Wichita.

FC Wichita took control early, finding their first chance just two minutes in but the cross sent in by Rosa Urista-Chico found nobody in the box. Five minutes later, another strong offensive attack for FC Wichita was stopped after they aired a ball wide of the net.

Dallas got their first chance in the 11th minute, sending a ball across the box. The ball just missed a runner’s foot, keeping the game scoreless.

In the 13th minute, FC Wichita broke the scoreless tie. Peyton Eskridge scored her first goal in a Wichita jersey. Eskridge ran down a ball, beating the keeper and tapped it into the net. The lead did not last long as Dallas scored on a own goal by Wichita in the 21st minute.

Just six minutes later, Dallas took their first lead of the game on a strike by Chelsea Supris. FC Wichita and newcomer Nayeli Gallo did not let that last long, finding an equalizer just 45 seconds later. Despite lots of chances on both sides, the 2-2 scoreline held to halftime. This included a goal taken off the board for Dallas due to an offsides call.

Head Coach Sammy Lane’s message to the team at halftime was fairly simple, saying that we were still in this game and we had played a solid half.

The second half was rough for FC Wichita, who struggled to gain and keep possession for long amounts of time. The 50th minute gave FC Wichita their first offensive chance of the half, but the shot was fired directly at the keeper. FC Wichita did not have a touch in the offensive third until the 67th minute. Dallas pushed forwards hard and made Jami Reichenberger make some difficult plays in this time.

In the 67th minute, FC Wichita put a good possession together, but failed to find the net once again. Six minutes later, Dallas’ Belicia Madiola broke the tie. Dallas kept their foot on the gas pedal, making Reichenberger work to keep the game at 3-2.

FC Wichita struggled to find another good offensive possession. That held true to the end of stoppage time, rewarding Dallas with the win.

The win gave FC Dallas 25 points, securing the southwest conference title. Wichita can still secure the second place position with wins against Little Rock and Fortuna.

FC Wichita continues their season in Little Rock, Arkansas on Saturday night to take on the Little Rock Rangers. Little Rock enters the game off a 0-0 draw with Fortuna Tulsa.

The FC Wichita Women return home Saturday, July 7 at 4:30 p.m. to finish the season against Fortuna Tulsa. That game will take place at Trinity Academy in Wichita. You can purchase your tickets here.

By the Numbers

14

Despite giving up three goals, Jami Reichenberger added 14 saves to her season total.

13

FC Dallas now leads the conference standings by 13 points over FC Wichita. Mathematically, that eliminated Wichita from title contention.

2

The two goals scored by Wichita were both by newcomers to the team, Peyton Eskridge and Nayeli Gallo.

Pre-Match Report: FC Wichita vs. FC Dallas

When: Thursday, June 28 :: 7:00 p.m. CST
Where:South Lakes Soccer Club | Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Social MediaTwitter | Facebook
View from the enemy: Here.
Online Stream: Unknown

FC Wichita
2018 WPSL Record: 4-2-0, 12 points
Form: LWWWL

FC Dallas
2018 WPSL Record: 7-0-1, 22 points
FORM: WWWWW

Preview

18 days following their last game, the FC Wichita Women finally return to the pitch for quite possibly the biggest game this season. FC Wichita (4-2-0) travel to Oklahoma City for the first of two neutral site games against FC Dallas (7-0-1).

FC Dallas is hot right now, still undefeated this season. Their only draw came against Fortuna Tulsa, a 1-1 contest. FC Dallas’ most recent contest was on Sunday June 24, a 6-0 win over Oklahoma City FC. Dallas only has two games left on their schedule, both against FC Wichita.

Unlike FC Dallas, FC Wichita still has four games to play, two against FC Dallas, one against the Little Rock Rangers, and the season finale at home against Fortuna Tulsa. FC Wichita has not played a game in a while, and that may show Thursday night. Their most recent game resulted in a 2-0 loss to Fortuna Tulsa.

Peyton Vincze and Dora Gallo have stood up as offensive leaders recently, accounting for most of the Wichita goals and shots in the past few games. Tanna Benefiel has controlled the ball well in the midfield, setting up many offensive opportunities. FC Wichita has the security blanket feel of Jami Reichenberger in goal, praised by her coaches as one of the best in the league.

Thursday night’s contest is set to start at 7 p.m. at South Lakes Soccer Club in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The women return to action on Saturday June 30, when they travel to Little Rock, Arkansas to take on the Little Rock Rangers. The women return home next week, July 7 to take on Fortuna Tulsa to end the season. You can purchase tickets here.

PLayers to Watch FOr

FC Dallas: Halee Sowinski

Halee has scored three goals and assisted on another. Her leadership has helped the explosive offense of FC Dallas this season, who have a +29 goal differential.

FC Wichita: Jami Reichenberger

FC Wichita needs Reichenberger to be a big presence in goal. If she can find another clean sheet in this game, FC Wichita will be in a decent position to fight for the conference title.

By: Matthew Will