"Basically, we just came out flat, and we just didn't work hard enough," coach James Galanis said. "We gave them too much respect. Basically, we just didn't show up to play.
"I think the girls don't want to feel like this again. They've tasted what it feels like did not work. I've spoken to a few of them that don't like this feeling and they are claiming that they will be ready to go this weekend. In general, in the game, there were no positives."
Though Galanis questioned the team's effort Sunday, as the team's record fell to 1-2-1, defender Cat Whitehill believed the Beat's problem pointed somewhere else.
"I think the effort was there," she said. "It was just the wrong type of effort. With this team, I don't feel like we ever do not try. We all try. I just think that we're either trying too hard, or not knowing where to put the effort, or something like that. We all need to be on the same page. You see one person putting the proper amount of pressure, then everyone else wouldn't be doing the same thing.
"We need to figure it out before the next game."
Whitehill said the team's sluggishness is something that could not remain as the season continues.
"I told the team in the locker room (after Sunday's game) that obviously this was an extremely disappointing result. But as soon as we wake up in the morning, we have to put it in the past. If you sit there and think about it too much, then a lot of times it creeps into your mind and you start to lose that confidence that we have.
"You can't lose that just because of one bad game. We just have to put that behind us."
? SHOTS APLENTY: Over the first four games, the Beat have only outshot their opponent once.
In last week's loss to Western New York, the Flash outshot the Beat 20-3, with 11 of their shots being on goal. In the Beat's 2-2 draw with the Flash a week earlier in Kennesaw, Western New York outshot Atlanta 14-6.
In the Beat's lone win of the season against Sky Blue FC, the New Jersey-based club outshot Atlanta 18-4.
While statistics point toward a shot disparity working in the opponents' favor, Galanis was less concerned with what the numbers showed.
"I don't really read into it too much," he said. "I look at clear chances and would say that (Sunday) they had, maybe, seven or eight clear chances. All of the rest were sort of half-chances. I don't really read into just the statistics too much. Somebody takes a shot and it takes a deflection where it rolls to the keeper. I don't pay attention to that."
? STICKING WITH LIPSHER: Before the season began, Allison Lipsher and Allison Whitworth were engaged in a battle for the starting goalkeeper's job.
In Week 1, Whitworth got the start in a 4-1 loss to Boston, but was sent off for a red card in the waning minutes of the match. Over the next two weeks, Lipsher stopped 24 shots and was twice named WPS' player of the week.
Galanis said at the beginning of the season that the goalkeeper's position would remain open to whoever is having the best performance at the time, but after Western New York's victory Sunday, with Lipsher starting, he said that there would be no changes in net.
The Beat travel to magicJack, the former Washington Freedom franchise, on Sunday in Boca Raton, Fla.
"(Lipsher) had another outstanding game," Galanis said. "None of the goals were Alli's fault. There were seven or eight clear chances that they had, and she saved five of them and was phenomenal again in goal. She'll be back in goal."
- By William Bretherton