Recap: Gophers women’s soccer falls to Wisconsin 1-0

Austin Cumblad

The No. 15 Gophers women’s soccer team’s 11-game unbeaten streak was ended by Wisconsin Thursday night at Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium. The Badgers converted their lone shot on goal into the game-winner in the 57th minute.

It was the second straight time in this matchup that the away team triumphed; Minnesota managed a 1-0 overtime win in Madison a year ago that turned out to be Wisconsin’s only home loss of the season.

“Our composure on the ball was off,” head coach Mikki Denney Wright said after the game. “We were frazzled in front of the goal; we didn’t make the right decisions.”

The Gophers and Badgers exchanged promising chances in an otherwise uninspired first half. Play wallowed mostly in the middle of the field but for a flurry of activity around the 20-minute mark.

Freshman forward MacKenzie Misel, in her first collegiate start, crossed from the left wing to midfielder Molly Rouse, but the senior captain sent her header from eight yards out over the goal.

Minutes later, the Badgers’ leading scorer Laurie Nosbusch got in position to receive a low cross at the near post and took a touch past goalkeeper Cat Parkhill. Sophomore defender Marissa Price was able to recover, however, and poked the ball behind the net.

But early in the second half, Wisconsin capitalized on its first and only shot on goal. The eventual game-winner came off the head of midfielder Alev Kelter, from a cross by Kodee Williams. Nosbousch nearly got her head on it first, which seemed to fool Parkhill and Kelter came crashing in from the top of the box to knock home a diving header.

Minnesota started pouring numbers forward and finally broke through Wisconsin’s defense with eight and a half minutes to play, but senior Katie Bethke, playing at striker, rattled a shot off the crossbar from twelve yards out. The Badgers spurned all of the Gophers’ late moves forward, despite Minnesota swinging ball after ball into the box.

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