Fire II forward Victor Bezerra scored in the team's first win in its history on Sunday in Bridgeview. Photo courtesy of the Chicago Fire

Fire II forward Victor Bezerra scored in the team's first win in its history on Sunday in Bridgeview. Photo courtesy of the Chicago Fire

Pro Soccer Report: Fire II get first win; Red Stars fall to San Diego

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By Jeff Vorva
Staff Writer

When the soccer world woke up on May 15, the Chicago Fire II had not won an MLS NEXT Pro game and the Chicago Red Stars had not lost a  regular-season game this season.

That all changed late that afternoon.

The Fire II won the first game in their short history with a 3-1 victory over FC Cincinnati 2 at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, while the Red Stars lost their first game of the young season, 2-1, on the road at expansion San Diego.

Omari Glasgow, Victor Bezerra and Alex Monis scored goals for the Fire (1-3-3, 7 points entering this week).

After some near-misses, the Fire II were pumped to finally get a victory over Cincinnati (1-6-0).

Fire coach Ludovic Taillandier, however, wasn’t totally pleased.

“Look, the first half was, of course, not the best half we’ve had,” he said. “We were not able to connect passes. Then we lost the ball a little silly sometimes and offered, like, a counterattack, turnovers to the opponent. That was, in general, not good enough.

“We are very happy with the result, of course and yeah, the taste of the win is something special that we missed a little bit. And we’re very happy for it.”

The Fire visits New York (3-3-2, 11 points) Saturday and will look for its first road victory in program history.

“We need to work from one game to the other and that’s what we do anyways, from the beginning,” Taillandier said. “We could have won games earlier. It’s always close. This time it was close, but it was positive for us. We will keep trying to develop this style of play based on trying to control the game as much as possible, trying to press them so they cannot play on the ball and trying to have the ball a little more than them.

“We feel this way we control a little bit of the game, that’s what we’re trying to implement and to improve every game.”

Red Stars fall

Ava Cook scored a goal and became the first player to put the ball through the net against the stingy San Diego defense, which came in with two shutouts, but the Red Stars (1-1-0) lost the game, 2-1.

Five rookies played in the game because the Red Stars are having injury and illness problems. That includes an injury to Mallory Pugh, who had four goals in the exhibition season.

Alex Morgan and Kaleigh Riehl scored for San Diego (3-0-0), which is the lone unbeaten team in the NWSL.

“This was a learning experience, but it still hurt,” veteran midfielder Alyssa Mautz said. “We were in this game and it hurts me even more with how close we were.”

“[The players not available] make up a good team,” first-year red Stars coach Chris Petrucelli said. “But our mindset was to win the game. Anyone who wears a jersey wants to win. I thought we had a chance to get one here.”

The Red Stars visit Orlando at 6 p.m. Sunday. Orlando is 1-1-1 and tied Kansas City, 2-2, on May 14. Gunny Jonsdottir scored in the 51st minute and Toni Pressley during extra time for Orlando.

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