The women of Chattanooga FC concluded their 2023 WPSL campaign with an impressive 7-0 victory against Soda City FC on Saturday evening.
Goals from Nadiia Ivanchenko, Krysan St. Louis, Summer Hernandez (3), Kailey Burrell, and Avery Engels were the perfect sendoff for the girls in blue after an exciting campaign.
There was a marked improvement for the side compared to the 2022 campaign, and there was one last chance to prove this in front of the home crowd against a struggling Soda City side from Columbia, SC.
Scoring began less than three minutes into the match. Former Ukrainian National Team standout Nadiia Ivanchenko was taken down on the edge of the box, winning a free kick. Rather than asking the referee for the wall to give ten yards, Ivanchenko simply set the ball down quickly and struck a fine curling effort past an off-guard goalkeeper. It was 1-0 in the 3rd minute.
Chattanooga dominated play through the rest of the half, hitting the crossbar twice and denying any chances for the visiting Soda City side. It was a wonder that the score was still 1-0 at the half.
It was in the second half that the girls in blue really started bubbling.
In the 52nd minute, Soddy Daisy HS and Lee University standout Summer Hernandez picked off a pass high up the pitch, turned, and played a perfect through ball to Krysan St. Louis. From about 10 yards out, St. Louis hit the ball perfectly with her first touch, tucking her shot off the inside of the far post to get Chattanooga’s second goal of the night.
Just three minutes later the girls in blue struck again. The high press from Chattanooga forced another turnover, and Hernandez was on hand to pick up the loose ball, cross a defender, and curl the ball past the keeper. It was 3-0 on 54 minutes.
Kailey Burrell, Dade County HS and Covenant College standout, joined the fun in the 59th minute. After receiving a throw in at the edge of the box, Burrell dribbled towards the center of the box and took a clever, low shot, beating the keeper at the near post.
Hernandez scored her second goal of the night in the 62nd minute. Avery Engels, former CFC Academy and Lee University player, won the ball high up the pitch and passed perfectly to Hernandez, who turned and struck perfectly to find the net.
Engels assisted Hernandez again in the 74th minute as her near post cross was headed in by Hernandez from an incredulous angle. Hernandez’s hattrick brought the score to 6-0.
The assister turned goalscorer as Avery Engels headed in Nadiia Ivanchenko’s corner in the 89th minute. The score would remain 7-0 up until the final whistle as the girls in blue put on an incredible display for the home crowd.
Overcoming rain delays, the early departures of key players, and besting the heat of the Chattanooga summer, it was a performance to be proud of from the girls in blue.
Fans will have to wait until next year to see them in action again, but if the side continues to improve as they did this year, it will be well worth the wait.
About Chattanooga Football Club
Chattanooga Football Club was founded in 2009. The CFC Men's team competes in the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA), which is in the third division of professional soccer. The CFC Women's team is a summer amateur team that competes in the Women's Premier Soccer League (WPSL). Chattanooga Football Club became the first soccer club to offer true ownership to the fans in 2019 with 3,200+ investors from Chattanooga, all 50 states, and 31 countries. CFC plays all home games in Finley Stadium in Chattanooga.