Gophers soccer dominates the University of Wyoming to win 4-0, extending their undefeated streak to five games

Junior Izzy Brown scored two goals in the first eight minutes of the match, marking the first two goals of her Gophers career.

Junior+Izzy+Brown+fights+for+possession+against+a+University+of+Wyoming+defender+on+Sunday%2C+Sept.+5%2C+2021%2C+at+Elizabeth+Lyle+Robbie+Stadium+in+St.+Paul%2C+Minn.

Kelly Hagenson - Gopher Athletics

Junior Izzy Brown fights for possession against a University of Wyoming defender on Sunday, Sept. 5, 2021, at Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium in St. Paul, Minn.

by Michael Lyne

Gophers soccer dominated the University of Wyoming Sunday evening 4-0 to extend their undefeated streak to five games to start the season as their record now sits at 3-0-2.

The Gophers dominated from the very beginning. Junior Izzy Brown opened up the scoring in the first minute of the game after sophomore Abi Frandsen passed the ball into the middle of the box. Brown received the pass and made no mistake, firing the ball into the lower right corner of the net to score her first goal with the program.

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Just seven minutes later, Brown found herself on a breakaway, and as she tried to dribble the ball around the goalkeeper, the goalkeeper tripped her in the box, which awarded her a penalty kick.

Gophers head coach Erin Chastain selected Brown to take the penalty kick, allowing her to have a chance at getting her second goal of the game. Brown buried her penalty kick as she fired another shot into the lower right corner of the net to give the Gophers a 2-0 lead in the first eight minutes of the game.

“It felt so good; this is something I’ve been waiting for for a long time and working toward,” Brown said. “It’s amazing to be able to come out with my teammates and score the two goals early.”

Offensively, the Gophers continued to build on their quick start. In the 13th minute, sophomore Sophia Boman sent a pass to freshman Khyah Harper at the right corner of the box. Harper received the pass and dazzled her way into the middle of the box, where she fired a low shot into the right side of the net to score her first collegiate goal and extend the lead to 3-0.

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“It felt really good to score my first one,” Harper said. “I was a bit frustrated with myself at first that I couldn’t just put it away when I was getting all the chances in our previous games, but getting to finish this one felt really good.”

With attacking numbers in the 34th minute, sophomore Christa VanLoon dribbled down the left side of the field toward the box and lofted a cross to the right side of the net when Boman caught the ball in stride to bury it into the lower-left corner of the box to grow the Gophers lead to 4-0.

The Gophers’ quick start allowed Chastain to utilize more players and give her starters rest, which included the debut of freshman goalkeeper Taryn Reitsma when she replaced junior starting goalkeeper Megan Plaschko in the 64th minute.

After the Gophers match on Thursday, when they allowed nine shots on goal, Chastain emphasized focusing on the defensive third heading into Sunday against the Cowgirls.

The defensive third for the Gophers looked composed and back to form, playing exceptionally well as they did not allow the Cowgirls to register a single shot on goal and only five shots all together.

The Cowgirls’ best chance of the game came in the second half. However, it was quickly shut down by senior Delaney Stekr when she sprinted back toward the Gophers’ net to make a huge block to eliminate a high-quality scoring opportunity from Wyoming.

While the Gophers remain undefeated, they also have not allowed a goal and Plaschko’s shutout streak now sits at five games.

The five-game shutout streak to start the season makes the Gophers just the second program in Big Ten history to accomplish this feat, joining Rutgers.

This week, the Gophers head to Omaha, Neb., to take on the University of Nebraska-Omaha on Thursday, Sept. 9, at 7 p.m. as they look to remain unbeaten.

Correction: A previous version of this story misstated when the University of Nebraska-Omaha game will take place. The game will take place at 7 p.m.