The Wildcats fell to No. 1 Grand Valley State and managed to pull a draw against Ferris State in a weekend on their home grass.
The Wildcats held the defending NCAA national champions scoreless through the first half. GVSU broke the tie early in the second half by a blast to the top right shelf in the 50th minute from junior forward Gabriella Mencotti. Six minutes later she repeated herself with another top right snipe assisted by senior forward Kendra Stauffer.
The third and final goal came from freshman midfielder Mia Gale in the 80th minute to seal the 3-0 victory for the top ranked team.
Grand Valley State out-shot Northern Michigan 28 to two with eleven of those on goal. Last year NMU lost to the soon-to-be champions GVSU to a score of 7-0.
The Wildcats took on Ferris St. for their third game of their five-game homestand and the second game of the weekend. Ferris State’s first and only goal came early off the foot of freshman forward Brandi Wagner in the third minute of play.
In the 77th minute, NMU sophomore forward Aimee Colla found the back of the net after a beautiful cross by junior defenseman Holie Koning. After two overtimes, neither team could bring in the game winning goal, solidifying the final score of a 1-1 draw.
“I hope this is an upswing for us,” said Colla, who had the late game-tying goal. “I think that this will bring us the courage and energy to win next game.”
The draw snapped a six game losing streak.
The Wildcats were without head coach Matt Granstrand after he took a leave of absence for the rest of the season, starting last week. David Poggi, who is currently the head coach for the men’s soccer team, stepped in and is acting as the interim head coach.
“You learn lessons whether you win or lose or tie and I think there were some really good lessons learned,” said Poggi. “[I need to] do the best I can for my players and help them reach their potential.”
Women’s soccer is nothing new to Poggi, having coached two successful collegiate women’s teams.
After an explosive start to the season with an 11-0 victory over Finlandia, the team is 0-6-1 over their last seven games. Coach Poggi says they need to score more goals if they want to be successful this weekend.
“We are looking to build on what we did well last week,” said Poggi. “With good goalkeeping and good defending and now add some attacking to it I think it’ll be an exciting weekend for the Cats,”
The Wildcats look to turn the season around this weekend at home against Ohio Dominican at 4 p.m. on Fri., Sept. 30 followed by Findlay at 1 p.m. on Sun., Oct. 2.