FCB women draw finalists despite gut punch in stoppage

Photo by FCB women’s team photographer Ryan Bartholomew

FC Buffalo remains unbeaten in its first United Women’s Soccer team and might still be perfect if not for a phantom foul call deep in stoppage time.

Carissima Cutrona and Kelsey Araujo set each other up for goals in a 2-2 draw with 2019 national finalists Lancaster (Penn.) Inferno at Robert Rich Sr. All-High Stadium on Saturday.

Coach Nikki Bartholomew’s Wolves led 2-0 on a pair of pretty goals. Cutrona released Araujo at the end of a quickfire buildup from Emily Lazenby to Erin Weir then Dani Vis as part of the opener, giving FCB a 1-0 lead in the 13th minute.

FCB took a 2-0 lead when Vis slipped Araujo into the left side of the box, the St. Bonaventure to Niagara connection then adding a University at Buffalo finish when Araujo turned the corner to set up Cutrona at the six.

But the Inferno, led by UB midfielder Gianna Yurchak, former Ottawa Fury midfielder Teresa Rook, and brace-bagging Ryelle Shuey.

The perennial powers’ comeback was not without controversy, as Tess Ford’s terrific capture of a loose ball between two Inferno players at the edge of two minutes stoppage was inexplicably deemed a foul before Rook spotted Shuey for the winner.

FCB’s women have a wildly-congested weekend in Massachussets next, with a 7pm ET Saturday tango with Worcester Smiles before moving