The Northern Michigan University Women’s Soccer team came out on the wrong end of a 1-0 result against the Northwood Timberwolves on Sept. 29, before earning a hard-fought 0-0 draw with Saginaw Valley State University on
Against Northwood, NMU dominated offensively, recording 17 shots to Northwood’s 8, but was unable to find the back of the net. Northwood, on the other hand, took advantage of one of their few opportunities, putting the ball past Freshman goalkeeper Brianna Frontuto on a 33rd minute corner kick and putting the Timberwolves up 1-0. This goal would prove to be all Northwood needed, despite a 33-minute span in the second half which saw the Wildcats take nine shots, while holding the Timberwolves shotless in the same time period.
“I thought we came out flat,” said NMU head coach Sonia Basma. “We woke up a little bit, got some fire under us when we got scored on, but unfortunately that was a little too late.”
After the loss to Northwood on Friday, NMU traveled to Saginaw Valley to face the Cardinals on Sunday. The offensive capabilities that the Wildcats showed against Northwood were nowhere to be seen, however, as the Green and Gold only managed to get 10 shots, as opposed to a staggering 33 for the Cardinals. Luckily for Northern, Brianna Frontuto stood tall in the net, saving all of Saginaw Valley’s 10 shots on target. NMU could only muster 3 shots on goal, and Cardinals’ keeper Isabel Bauer stopped them all.
The first 90 minutes ended in a 0-0 deadlock, and the match went to extra time. Neither team found the back of the net in the two extra periods, however, and the match ended in a scoreless draw.
“We played hard, we played well. We were obviously outshot by a good amount,” said Basma, “but toward the end of the game, where we’re still in it 0-0, we started dictating play a little bit, especially in overtime. In the second overtime, we outshot them, but we couldn’t put one in the back of the net.”
Frontuto’s 10 saves marks the first time this season that the freshman’s single-game saves tally hit double digits. All told, she currently has 51 saves on the year, the fifth-most in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. This match was also Frontuto’s third shutout of the season, and her goals-against average dropped to 1.39.
“As the season has progressed, I’ve really been focusing on owning the box,” Frontuto said. “I think Saginaw was the first game where I really did own the box as best as I could. I felt a different level of confidence than I had previously.
“We’re creating opportunities, creating chances, and it’s awesome,” said Basma, when asked about her plan for this weekend’s game. “We’re playing good, stout soccer, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to put the ball in the back of the net if you want that ‘W’, so we’re going to look to really focus on the attacking end against Michigan Tech.”
NMU, who currently stands with an overall record of 2-6-2, will take to the pitch again on Sunday at 1:00 for a home match against the Michigan Tech Huskies.