Gophers soccer ties winning-streak record

Aaron Kirscht

The Gophers soccer team tied the team record of five consecutive wins Sunday with their 1-0 victory over Ohio State. The 1995 Big Ten championship team opened its season with five wins.
But this streak will be difficult to extend. The No. 14 Gophers travel Friday to Madison, Wis., to play No. 2 North Carolina.
“We have nothing to lose,” Coach Sue Montagne said. “So we’re going to go in there and play our hearts out and do the best we can.”
The Tarheels won nine straight national championships before being upset by Notre Dame in the semifinals of last year’s NCAA tournament.
Johnson keeps on giving
Freshman Megan Johnson, who assisted on Erin Hussey’s game-winning goal Sunday, leads the team with nine assists. That’s good for third place all-time in a single season behind Jennifer Walek (18 in 1995) and Corinne Bolder (11 in 1995). But Johnson hasn’t scored this season.
“I don’t like not scoring (goals),” Johnson said, “but it’s something I have to deal with.”
Montagne is happy with Johnson’s progress this season.
“Early on, she would just bang the ball over the top (of the net),” Montagne said. “Now she’s playing the ball on the ground, picking out targets and hitting them. She’s really coming on.”
Gophers lead Big Ten in goals
Hussey and junior Jennifer McElmury share the Big Ten lead in goals with 10. Hussey’s number is a career high, but McElmury scored 12 goals last season.
Hussey’s goal on Sunday was her sixth game-winner of the season, another team record. Walek held the previous record of five, set in 1994.
“Megan gave me an awesome cross,” said Hussey, who scored easily from inside the six-yard box. “I expected the ball to go there, and it did. It was a great ball.”
Post-season set
Minnesota finished its regular season in third place with a 5-2 record behind Wisconsin (5-0-2) and Penn State (4-1-1). The Badgers are the first team to go undefeated in conference play since the league formed in 1994.
Seedings for the Big Ten tournament, which is at Ohio State on Nov. 8-10, are determined by regular-season record.