Minnesota wins one, ties another over weekend

The Gophers continued a winning streak against North Dakota State with a 4-0 shutout and battled Tennessee to a 0-0 tie.

Minnesota wins one, ties another over weekend

by Brittany Storoz

University of Minnesota womenâÄôs soccer improved its record this weekend to 3-1-1 after defeating North Dakota State (2-2-1) and fighting to a draw with Tennessee (2-2-1) at home. The Gophers met up with NDSU on Sunday having defeated the Bison 3-0 on the road last year. Minnesota earned another shutout this Sunday, winning 4-0. This marks the teamâÄôs fourth win against NDSU, giving them a perfect 4-0 record against the team. The Gophers got off to a rocky start as the squad tried out a new formation and went scoreless for the first 40 minutes. âÄúIt was just unnatural for us in the beginning,âÄù head coach Mikki Denney Wrigh t said. âÄúWe thought this might be a good game to look at something different.âÄù Switching back to a comfortable formation remedied the confusion and sparked goals before half time. With just 2:05 left in the first half, senior Sara Clancy scored the first goal of the game after making a penalty kick that went outside the reach of Bison goalkeeper Kalani Bertsch . Less than a minute later, Minnesota struck again when junior Molly Rouse made an unassisted goal that bumped the Gophers lead to 2-0. âÄúThe formation that weâÄôre playing now is really position-oriented, and the players that we have now are more powerful with possession, which helps us out a lot,âÄù Rouse said. Before ending the first half, junior Angie Olson gave Bertsch yet another scare when she threatened to score, but the shot bounced off the top of the net. Olson came back in the second half to to assist a goal for Rouse, bringing the Gophers lead to 3-0. âÄúWeâÄôre just trying to figure out our partners and figure out our duos,âÄù Wright said. âÄúWe just need some duos up top to make the combination play.âÄù Freshman Marissa Price assisted junior Katie Bethke, who scored the last goal of the game âÄî her third of the season âÄî bringing the final score to 4-0.

Shutting down the offense

MinnesotaâÄôs offense was shut out for the second time by Tennessee last Friday, but the GophersâÄô relentless defense brought the game into double overtime before ending in a 0-0 tie. The box score reflected how both teams kept up with each other and played a similar game. The offense on both teams paralleled on paper, both recording 19 shots and three shots on goal. While Minnesota finished the game with 10 fouls to TennesseeâÄôs eight , the Lady Vols had to cope with two redcards in the second half. The first went to freshman Ali Hall after she was tripped up with Rouse, bringing Tennessee down to 10 players. Just minutes later, Lady Vols head coach Angela Kelly received the second redcard and was forced to leave the field for the last 50 minutes of the game. Despite the disadvantages for Tennessee, Minnesota was unable to make a move after seeing several chances to score. One prime opportunity for the Gophers to break the defensive deadlock came when Bethke side-stepped Lady Vols goalkeeper Molly Baird and had a shot at the open net. BethkeâÄôs kick went wide and just narrowly missed the net. âÄúGoal scoring is a streaky thing in soccer,âÄù Wright said. âÄúOur kids are dissappointed they didnâÄôt finish those opportunities, but theyâÄôre glad theyâÄôre creating them.âÄù Despite a stronger offensive threat in the second half, the defenses blocked 29 total shots in regulation, with both goalkeepers recording three saves. With these saves, Gophers goalkeeper Cat Parkhill earned her third shut out of the season. âÄúA lot of that has to do with my defense,âÄù Parkhill said. âÄúTheyâÄôre not allowing any shots or giving them a clear look, so that makes my job a lot easier.âÄù Minnesota travels to Wisconsin next weekend to meet up with the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Sept. 11 and Marquette University on Sept. 13.