So with two weeks of the 2015 Women's World Cup complete and with the quarterfinal round starting later this week, here's what we know in regard to Sky Blue FC players and New Jersey's representatives in Canada.
Captain America is now a role player. Point Pleasant's Christie Rampone didn't get off the bench against Australia or Sweden. Rampone did see about 20 minutes of action against Nigeria and became the oldest player to appear in a Women's World Cup match and is playing in her fifth World Cup. There's been some chatter on social media about putting her in the first XI and playing a 4-3-3 against Colombia and perhaps China, gearing up for the potential winner of the Germany-France quarterfinal. I don't see that happening. Jill Ellis is probably going to keep that backline intact and ride that out, looking to juggle her offensive choices with Amy Rodriguez, Abby Wambach, Sydney Leroux and Alex Morgan.
No O'Hara: Kelley O'Hara saw meaningful minutes in the run up to the WWC but hasn't gotten off the bench. Some SBFC supporters have been literally begging to see her get on the pitch, but unless injuries come into play, she won't see any minutes
Foord is a force. Caitlin Foord has been solid throughout group play for Australia and in the 1-0 win over Brazil, she was perhaps the most important player on the field. Foord marked the sensational Marta out of the game, allowing only one dangerous chance on goal in the second half. Foord was named the outstanding young player in Germany four years ago and her stock continues to rise. Defense hasn't been a problem for the Sky Blue but when her and Samantha Kerr return when the Matildas are done, they could provide a second-half spark that is sorely needed.
Kerr is OK: Kerr was on the receiving end of a notorious elbow from Nigerian defender Ugo Njoku, that ended up costing her a hefty fine and a three-game suspension. Kerr thought she might have a broken jaw but played 90 minutes against Brazil yesterday. The 21-year old striker is enjoying every aspect of the World Cup, except perhaps getting slugged in the jaw. Kerr had a volley attempt against Brazil yesterday that went wide.
Filigino getting her minutes: Rutgers grad and SBFC striker Jonelle Filigno has started two games for host Canada and came on for 21 minutes in the win over Switzerland. She had a couple of chances in the air against New Zealand but didn't connect.
Ocampo returning home: Midfielder/striker Monica Ocampo platyed in all three matches for Mexico. Las Tri, which is essentially the USA B team, lost all three games in Canada.
Other New Jersey-based players: Everyone is wondering when Carli Lloyd, from Delran, will crank up her game. Today's match against Colombia will be none to soon for this to take place. Although there are four NJ-based players in the US team, Tobin Heath saw limited action in the opener and played very well in controlling the pace of the match against Australia late. She has been absent the last two games. Heather O'Reilly hasn't seen a minute of action.
Formiga's ties: With Marta struggling, 37-year-old Formiga was the best Brazilian on the pitch against Australia. She had a laser in the first half after stealing a pass. Australia goalkeeper Lydia Williams tipped her shot over the bar. Formiga also had a header that was just off the mark in the second half. Formiga played one year for the NJ Wildcats of the old W-League in 2006 and with Sky Blue FC in 2007. She is the oldest player to score in a Women's World Cup match with her strike against South Korea. She has played in all but one of the Women's World Cup, missing only the 1991 tournament.