Late Kerr Hat-Trick Leads Sky Blue Past KC

Sam Kerr, NWSL
Sam Kerr's hat-trick led Sky Blue past Kansas City. Photo by Jeffrey Auger.

Sky Blue FC 3
FC Kansas City 2

Goals: SBFC: 78’ Sam Kerr (assist Kelley O’Hara), 81’ Sam Kerr (assist Daphne Corboz), 90’ Sam Kerr (assist Taylor Lytle); KC: Katie Bowen (assist Christina Gibbons), 42’ Christina Gibbons (Desiree Scott)

Overview: With 10 matches remaining in the NWSL season, one has to wonder what other magic Sam Kerr will create. With back-to-back league Player of the Month awards in her pocket, and a dazzling bicycle kick a highlight of the 2017 season, Kerr is doing her best to lock up the NWSL Most Valuable Player award early. On Saturday, with Sky Blue trailing by two goals and facing defeat, Kerr’s 12-minute hat-trick again dazzled the home crowd and gave the Blues a much-needed three points. Her first goal came in the 78th minute. On that play, Sarah Killion was playing on the right side of the back line, where she collected distribution before sending it up the flank for O’Hara. After quickly gathering the feed, O’Hara delivered a beautiful strike into the penalty area. A speeding Kerr then ran under the cross before redirecting a diving header past Kansas City keeper Nicole Barnhart to put Sky Blue FC on the board. In the 81st minute, Taylor Lytle had possession in the midfield before playing Daphne Corboz in front of her. Corboz then quickly hit Raquel Rodriguez with a one-two ball before sending a hard roller towards Kerr inside the 18-yard box. Showing no hesitation, Kerr immediately hammered a right-footed rocket that did not afford Barnhart any time to react. Still not done, Sky Blue FC finished off the comeback in the 90th minute. Corboz first gathered from 25 yards out before sending a ball to Lytle, who one-timed it towards Kerr as she made a run into the penalty area. Kerr then rolled the feed with her right foot before poking it past Barnhart, scoring her third goal in 12 minutes to lead Sky Blue FC all the way back from being down 2-0.

Quotable:
Sky Blue FC Head Coach Christy Holly…
“Tonight’s game is a direct representation of the incredible character that each and every one of our players has. What we saw in terms of their tenacity and competitive edge, but also their desire to work for each other sums up everything that we know about this team. The unity amongst them and their belief in one another is very special.”

About Sam Kerr…
“Sam is playing at a different level right now. The most exciting thing about Sam is we truly believe there is still more to come from her. She is very young, and she is still very early in her development. These are the moments where she is proving to be one of the best players in the world. As her coach and as a fan, we could not be any prouder of her.”

What’s next:
Sky Blue FC will return home on Saturday, July 15, to host the Chicago Red Stars. Kickoff is 7 p.m.