Gotham, Mewis, NWSL

A Look into Gotham FC's Thrilling Unbeaten Run

Gotham FC have gone on an unbeaten streak since losing 2-0 to the Washington Spirit. Can the Bats continue their progress?

Two road games in the West provided some needed relief for Gotham as they looked to stay out of the loss column. The two home games before the road trip saw Gotham tie Racing Louisville and beat the North Carolina Courage. The Bats were looking to continue this start of a streak on the road before returning home and heading West again, all before a short international break.

The first stop on their Western road trip saw the Bats take on the Houston Dash. The first half went exactly as Gotham would have wanted, with them taking the lead in the 8th minute. Lynn Williams was able to find the back of the net early on, and the team was able to keep the lead 1-0 at the half. The second saw chances, with Gotham ending the match with 19 shots and 5 on target, but the score would remain 0-1 with Williams' goal the sole ball to cross the line.

The following game and last on the West Coast trip was a visit to San Diego. Gotham's previous match against the San Diego Wave was in the Challenge Cup Final, where they lost at home 0-1. Gotham would again open the scoring in the first half, with Ella Stevens finding the back of the net in the 25th minute. This time, the lead would not last until the final whistle, with San Diego hitting back in the 64th. This match would end 1-1, but Gotham would gladly take the point home.

After a successful road trip and staying out of the loss of the column, the team headed home looking towards their match with Chicago. The Red Stars were able to keep NJ/NY at bay until the second half. Williams would strike first, giving the Bats the lead in the 57th minute. This was the goal that would beat Sam Kerr's scoring record, bringing Williams to 79 goals. Chicago would tie it up in the 74th, but Ella Stevens gave Gotham the lead and the win with her 90th-minute strike.

The most recent Gotham match was away to the newest NWSL team, Bay FC. A dominant first-half performance allowed Ella Stevens to strike twice, giving the Bats the lead in the 31st and extending it two minutes later. After waves and waves of attack from Gotham, Bay was able to keep the score to just 0-2 going into the half. The second half saw a shift in attacking prowess as Bay took control of the game. Gotham keeper Ann-Katrin Berger was able to keep Gotham's lead alive despite going down with slight injuries a few times. The streak would continue as the match finished 0-2.

Going into the international break, the Gotham are currently sitting in fifth. However, the Bats have one of the lowest-scoring records in the NWSL. Even with the scoring woes that have been around this season, the defense is keeping them up. Since losing to Washington, NJ/NY has had three goals scored against and nine goals scored for them.

A sound defense is what can keep this unbeaten run alive. As long as they are not scored against, Gotham can figure out how to score more. Since adding Emily Sonnett to the backline, there has been consistency in the defensive half of the pitch.

Now, the team must look to create shots on target and continue their progress. With Lynn Williams getting back into form and Ella Stevens stepping up in scoring, it gives NJ/NY new scorers to look at and not rely so heavily on Esther. It can even give Esther more of an opportunity to create and not just score. She has the speed and technicality to move with the ball and create chances for her teammates, and with Williams and Stevens on a hot scoring streak, it allows Esther more freedom to create.

The Gotham will play their next match at home on June 8th. They will be taking on Angel City FC at 12:30 p.m. at Red Bull Arena, and the game will be aired on CBS.

Be sure to check out for Gotham updates all season long! 

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