Young soccer team seeks first win at home

Gary Wartz

Northern Michigan University’s women’s soccer team returns home play this weekend when they host the University of Minnesota Duluth at 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12 and the University of Minnesota Crookston at noon Sunday, Sept. 14.

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The women’s soccer team lost the season opener at home to the visiting Minnesota St. Cloud State Huskies 0-1 on Friday, Sept. 5. After a scoreless first half the Wildcats gave up their own goal in the 62nd minute off a corner kick. NMU outshot the Huskies 13-10 in the effort.

In goal for the ’Cats, sophomore Alexandra Simmons made three saves against the Huskies. The Wildcats lost 4-1 Sunday, Sept. 7 to No. 23-ranked Winona State University. After a scoreless first half, Winona State started the second half with three unanswered goals.  The loss put NMU at a record of 0-2 to start the season.

Sophomore goalkeeper Caroline Glantz said the team is making improvements.

“These are games where we’re getting to know each other and trying different things out with our game,” Glantz said. “We’re just figuring everything out now, and it looks very good. We have two more games to practice before we start conference games, and I think we’ll be ready by then.”

Glantz made nine saves in goal for the Wildcats, playing 63:38 minutes in Sunday’s game. Freshman midfielder Abbie Cook scored the ’Cats only goal in the 75th minute, assisted by senior midfielder Ashley Katers.

Cook said the team is building off of each other’s success.

“I see my teammates working really hard, which encourages me to stay focused and continue working,” Cook said. “We are getting better with each game, and I think we are connecting more and utilizing our skills and abilities better.”

NMU will host the University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs at 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12.

The ’Cats lost to UMD last season 1-2 on Thursday, Sept. 5 at Malosky Stadium in Duluth as the Bulldogs outshot them, 13-7.

Head coach Matt Granstrand declined to elaborate, aside from saying: “Duluth is sixth in the country, they are a well established team and we are an up and coming team.”

The Wildcats will host will host Minnesota Crookston at noon Sunday, Sept. 14.

Last season NMU lost to the University of Minnesota Crookston on Saturday, Sept. 7 in the last seconds of regulation.

NMU outshout Crookston 17-6, but lost when senior forward Nikki Hammond scored with 25 seconds left in regulation for the Golden Eagles.

Junior defender Hailey Beyrand said the team knows hard work now will eventually equate to success.

 “We have a fantastic team, everyone is able to show up and play, just keep giving full effort all the time,” Beyrand said. “From Friday’s game to today’s game we made huge improvements, as long as we keep going the way we are, I think we will have a good fight.”