Shannon Boxx LupusMay is #LupusAwarenessMonth. Follow @lupusorg & visit  to help join the fight against lupus.  In 2011 Shannon Boxx made it public that she suffered from lupus – she had been diagnosed in 2007 when she was 30 years old.  Her symptoms were typical extreme exhaustion from doing the same workouts she had become used to over the previous years.   She has been quoted explaining her condition “As an elite athlete, it is my job to maintain a high fitness level, as well as sustain a strong mentality. Now add in a disease where my main symptoms are extreme fatigue and joint pain, and that standard becomes a little bit more difficult to maintain.  I am very fortunate that I have finally found a medicine that helps control my symptoms, but a few years ago that wasn’t the case.

I remember in 2010 going to training sessions completely exhausted and my knees throbbing from all my joint pain. I remember willing myself through those training sessions and then getting home and lying on the couch the rest of the day.

Mentally, I was exhausted because I was trying to figure out the right medicines to use; I was dealing with side effects from those medicines and I was keeping it a secret from my teammates.”

This week Shannon had surgery to deal with a nagging knee injury unrelated to the lupus.  According to her recent Tweets she’s feeling good and she’s happy the surgery went well.  Evidently she doesn’t have much patience for recovery and is already antsy.  I’m looking forward to her return to the Chicago Red Stars in about six weeks.   Stay strong Boxxy.


The Black Card Player of the Week (3): Danesha Adams


Danesha Adams SkyBlue April 2013On Sunday, April 27th, Sky Blue’s Danesha Adams had a great game.  She was involved in both goals for her team, the first a fantastic corner kick that set up at the right height to let Coco Goodson (5’11) get a head on it, and the second was a fantastic pass to Lisa De Vanna down the lane where she was able to run it down to the end line and serve it up for an open Sophie Schmidt who knocked it in from the penalty area for the winning goal.  Adams is primed to have a great season if she can stay clear of injuries, and continue to maintain her fitness and confident attitude.  Sky Blue FC defeated Washington Spirit 2-1.


Shannon Boxx will undergo an exploratory arthroscopic surgery on her right knee on April 30, 2013 according to the Chicago Red Stars.   Boxx is expected to miss approximately 4-6 weeks of playing time, and is also likely to miss the U.S.-Canada rematch in Toronto on June 2.

The timing isn’t perfect, but it rarely ever is.  At least Boxx’s time out will be a relatively short period of time, and is during a relatively unimportant time for both club and country.  In terms of her future with the USWNT, there should be only a slight concern about younger players sliding into her position while she’s away.  Coach Tom Sermanni is not shy about moving players around, so the absence of Boxx will make it all the more easy for him to do so. However, there really isn’t anyone like her that has the combination of her strength, stamina and control in the mid-field young or old, so in the end as long as she can get healthy quickly her position on the USWNT should not be in real jeopardy.  I wish her a speedy recovery.

In the meantime, where will Shannon recover, in Chicago or back home in Cali?  And, what will she do with all that spare time?

The Black Card Player of the Week (2): Nikki Washington

Nikki Washington MJordan Look Week 2

On Sunday, April 21st, Washington had a great, great game, from goal to goal she nearly ran a marathon. She had a beautiful corner in the first half, which almost turned into a goal, but the Reign’s Betos made a diving save. Then she had a beautiful free kick, a line drive that glanced off Dougherty’s head for a goal right before the half time whistle. And later in the 2nd half she had great shot on goal from a Sinclair pass that nearly went in as Betos went out of bounds to save the goal. The Thorns had to settle for a corner kick. (Note, Michael Jordan sports fans, the waggin’ tongue is back!)


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The Western New York Flash and the Washington Freedom tied 1-1 Saturday at the Maryland SoccerPlex in front of 4,569 fans after two goals in a three minute stretch late in the match.

After being down by one goal, the home side tied the game less than two minutes later when Canadian midfielder Diana Matheson scored from the penalty spot after Jasmyne Spencer was brought down from behind in the box.

Since the live feed wasn’t the best, I’ll go with the female commentator who clearly saw Spencer taken down from behind in the box.  If that’s the case, there was no other call that could be made.   The refs were right.

The final few minutes turned an energetic game into a total thriller!  The point is Western New York’s (0-1-1) first of the season, while the Spirit (0-0-2) earned a second consecutive draw to open 2013.

Missing from the Spirit line-up today was one of the most fierce & consistent defenders in recent times veteran Candace Chapman.  She also wasn’t one of Canada’s allocated players from the CNT.  What’s amiss?

Missing from the Flash line-up today was Bryanna McCarthy, a CNT allocated player.  Hard to understand how any allocated players would see zero time on the pitch unless there’s an injury.   I hope to see her on the pitch soon.


Spirit XI: Harris; Toulouse, Huster, Gayle, Krieger; Roberts, Lindsey, Matheson, Wells (Spencer, ’46; Hodak. ’90), Ochs, McCarty (Miller, 84′)

Flash XI: Franch, Sahlen, Johnson, Taylor, Reynolds; Yokers, Zerboni (DiMartino, ’79), Perez; Kerr (Robinson, 90+), Martin, Wambach


Pre-Game Tweets Week 2: The Black Card

Twitter with Soccer Ball

Game 1

Washington Spirit:

Candace Chapman – on Thursday Candace was feeling philosophical and Tweeted “Create your own opportunities! #NoExcuses”.  Since she’s not a forward she’s not talking about creating goals, so maybe she’s referencing the fact that she’s playing in the NWSL this season at all.  Strangely, she wasn’t one of the CNT allocated players, a huge mistake in my opinion.  John Herdman are you listening???!!!

Robin Gayle – retweeted a fan shout out to her, Krieger & Harris referencing “Pump&Loud” from Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift!  This fan is obviously really pumped up the Spirit defense. #SpiritFingers

Tiffany McCarty – wassup’ Tiffany?  Where’s your Twitter account?  C’mon join us in the Twiterverse.  Please.

Jasmyne Spencer – how does Jasmyne get pumped up for a game, well obviously she watches Lacrosse!  Makes total sense doesn’ it?  Here’s her Saturday morning 12pm est Tweet “#Florida is on fire!! Cullen dishes on the FP to Wiegand for a 3-0 lead 28:29 into the conests #FLaxvsNU”  Whatever floats your boat Jasmyne.  Good luck tonight.


 Western New York Flash:

Adrianna Franch – the Equalizer player of the week retweeted WNY assistant coach’s “perfect grass to play perfect soccer” Tweet.  And indeed if I played on these fields my soccer would be Marta perfect LOL.  Or so I wish!  Good luck Adrianna.  Time to nail your first clean sheet.

Estelle Johnson – “It’s Saturday so you know what that means…”  Hopefully, it means Gooooool!!!

Bryanna (Bry) McCarthy – if you’re happy and you know it clap your hands, if you’re happy and you know it clap your hands – well bry’s showing it today with her emoticon ending Tweet “Nothing better than GAMEDAY!! @WNYFlash vs @WashSpirit today at 7pm! #LetsGoFlash clap clap clap”

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Jodi-Ann Robinson – hope you had a great birthday week Jodi!  We’d love to follow you on Twitter so please set-up an account asap if u haven’t already and let us know where we can find you. #TwitterRocks

Pre-Game Tweets Week 2: The Black Card

Twitter with Soccer Ball

Game 2

Portland Thorns:

Jazmyne Avant – hasn’t tweeted yet at all, but she has a twitter account, baby steps…baby steps. LOL.

Karina LeBlanc – hasn’t tweeted since the 14th – she must be really focused on this next game!

Nikki Washington – like Nikki most players are probably filled with pride over the heroism of Boston’s finest.  She said it best MT “…Makes me happy seeing people applaud Law enforcement for all their work. That’s right. #communityeffort #trueheroes” truth!”


Seattle Reign:

Tiffany Cameron – why isn’t Tiffany playing this weekend??? Her Twitter account from today reads “On my way to canada for two days ..all that packing took forever!!”

Lindsay Taylor – hasn’t posted since Tuesday, but based on her Tweet she should be relaxed & ready to go. “Feels so good to be back in Seattle #nothinglikeyourownbed”