NMU claws out comeback road victory

Karly Ratzenberger

The women’s soccer team went 1-1 on their road trip to Ohio last weekend, losing to Notre Dame College on Friday Sept. 14 0-2 and later beating Lake Erie College 2-1 on Sunday Sept. 16.

Freshman defensive player Hailey Beyrand said the games in general went over very well.

“The first game was a challenge; we were lacking team unity and were unable to finish in the attacking third,” Beyrand said. “But the second game the team came out knowing what needed to happen and we were able to get it done. The team was able to play as one and we had some wonderful finishes that allowed us to take home the win.”

Head coach Matt Granstrand said he is really proud of the team and their accomplishments the past weekend.

“We are learning how to win and compete and as a young team that is what we need to do,” Granstrand said.

The Wildcats had 15 attempted shots against Notre Dame College, and the ’Cat’s defense faced 16 shots. Fourteen of Notre Dame’s shots were saved by freshman goal keeper Shelby Conard.

Overall, the team had to travel around 50 hours this weekend to compete in their games. Beyrand said this factor created a challenge for the Wildcats, one that the team was able to surpass.

“Our team was able to overcome the long trip and not allow the distance to become a factor in this weekend’s games,” Beyrand said.

Sophomore Kim Rietveld said her favorite part about the weekend was winning the game against Lake Erie and the team’s comeback from the first half.

“We started out down a goal late into the first half, then we came back and scored two which was really good,” Rietveld said. “It is great to head home after a win.”

The ’Cats had 12 attempted shots in their game against Lake Erie, and Conard had six saves. To put the Wildcats on the scoreboard, freshman midfielder Tiffany Trembley had their first goal. Sophomore forward Tevun Sellers sealed the deal with her unassisted winning goal.

Beyrand said the biggest thing the team has been working on this year has been to come together on the field to work with 11 women and play as one.

“In the second game this weekend, all the work finally paid off,” Beyrand said. “We were able to play as one team for the full game and it showed.”

Sellers said the team did a good job of mentally preparing for the games, which may have had an effect on the outcome.

“I think the main thing we changed to win these games was we all prepared mentally for them a little more, and wanted to go out there and win because I think we are all sick of losing,” Sellers said.

Beyrand said the ’Cats really showed up to play last weekend, but the two players in particular that stepped up and lead the team were Rietveld and sophomore defender Taylor Smith.

“Taylor’s speed on the outside as well and determination allowed no attacking opponents to get around her,” Beyrand said. “Kim’s ability to dictate the game by her control on the ball and her capability to play every position on the field allows her to be a threat that cannot be reckoned with on the field.”

Beyrand said the Wildcats are very excited for the upcoming games, and to see how the team continues to improve.

“With our next game being against Michigan Tech at our home field, our whole team is extremely excited to get back out on the field and show what we are truly made of,” Beyrand said.

Rietveld said the ’Cats have a lot of motivation for the upcoming game so she is looking for a win.

“The last time we played them we lost,” Reitveld said. “I think that gives us great motivation to go out on Saturday and play our best game to get the win.”

Come out to support the Wildcats as they take on Michigan Tech University at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22 on their home field behind the dome.