UND falls short against University of Minnesota

UND Goaltender Catherine Klein nearly sets new record for saves in a single game. Photo by Nick Nelson/ The Dakota Student

Dakota Student / Nicholas Nelson

UND Goaltender Catherine Klein nearly sets new record for saves in a single game. Photo by Nick Nelson/ The Dakota Student

The Fighting Hawks lose first match of the season against the Golden Gophers

The University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks headed down to the Twin Cities to take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers in women’s soccer. The Fighting Hawks, who came off a double-overtime win against South Dakota, wanted to get off to a good start against the number 17 team in the nation. Nothing really got going for the Hawks, however, as they would lose to the Big Ten school, 3-0, at Elizabeth Lyle Robbie stadium.

Despite the 3-0 road loss to the border rivals, Head Coach Kellogg was pleased with his team’s effort on Friday night. “I walked away from tonight’s game very proud of our group,” Kellogg said. “We played an extremely dangerous top-20 team and gave up one goal through the run of play. We were able to create some dangerous chances of our own, but just couldn’t capitalize on them.”

While the Gophers did score three goals, only one came during the heat of battle as the third goal was scored off a breakaway; Minnesota’s first goal was scored off a penalty kick and the second came off a set play from a corner. All three goals came in the first half.

Coach Kellogg was very happy with his team’s effort in the second half, as the Gophers didn’t muster up very many chances in the second half. “We made some adjustments at halftime and the players were able to keep Minnesota off the board in the second half,” added Kellogg.

Reigning Big Sky Defensive Player of the Week and freshman goalkeeper Catherine Klein kept UND in the game with 16 saves. The 16 saves by the freshman was a career-high for the freshman, and it just narrowly misses the UND single-game record of 18 set back in 2014 by former goalkeeper Kristen Hestdalen. Klein made a total of seven saves in the first half, while stopping all nine shots she saw in the second half.

The loss to the Gophers is UND’s first of the season. UND now moves to 1-1-1 on the season. UND now heads out to take former NCC rival Nebraska-Omaha on Sunday afternoon. The kickoff against the Mavericks is set for noon in Omaha, Nebraska.

When UNO hosts the Fighting Hawks, it will be the third game of four straight home games at Caniglia Field. The Mavs, who come off a home loss to in-state rivals Creighton 3-1, are 1-1 on the season. The Summit League Mavericks also have a very good stopgap in net. In a win over UMKC to start off the season, Maverick goalkeeper Hayley Shelton made 8 saves in a 2-0 win for the Mavericks. That performance by Shelton earned her Big Sky Defensive Player of the Week. It’s going to be a tough game for the Fighting Hawks who have scored only one goal through three games, and now heading out on the road for another tough matchup, against a very good team with a very good goalkeeper, coach Matt Kellogg is going to have to have his players ready to go this Sunday in Omaha.

Hunter Plante is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. He can be reached at [email protected]