North Dakota fights losing battle

SOCCER: UND falls to Boise State 3-1 Sunday afternoon after recent victory over NDSU.

The team devises a plan to try and make a come back. Photo by Keisuke Yoshimura.

UND’s soccer team played host to the Boise State Broncos this past Sunday at Bronson Field in Grand Forks.

Despite a strong effort, North Dakota could not get past the Broncos and lost 3-1.

The loss dropped UND to 1-7-0 and moved Boise State to 4-2-2.

“I think our girls are starting to really learn the lessons of having to protect the ball and to maximize our opportunities when we get them,” UND coach Matt Kellogg said. “We did create several opportunities; we just couldn’t put them away to make it 2-2.”

UND was coming off its recent win over NDSU last Wednesday. Except for the bit of cool breeze, it was a great atmosphere for the game, with the sun shining bright and the temperature in the mid 60s.

Once again, junior goalkeeper Kristi Hestdalen was in the net for UND. Hestdalen kept North Dakota in the game a few different times when she made saves off the tips of her fingers. The communication and passing for UND was well put together, but Boise State had a few lucky breaks and was able to put the ball past Hestdalen to get the win.

The game stayed relatively even throughout the first half, until the 23-minute mark when Boise State’s Kayla Tucker scored to make it 1-0, with the Broncos in command. UND fought back and tied it with freshman Michelle Stingle’s goal at the 31 minute mark.

The game remained tied until the 34-minute mark when Boise State’s Ashley Hruby scored to give her team the lead once again. The game remained 2-1 until halftime. Once the teams returned from the break it was even play, though the score didn’t show it that way.

UND had its chances, including one where the ball missed the goal by just a few inches. The second half held the score of 2-1 until the 87-minute mark when the Boise State’s Rebe Wolverton put the last goal in for the Broncos and made it 3-1, sealing the win. UND did not give up and had a few close chances late in the game. But they couldn’t catch a break as Boise State went on to claim the 3-1 victory.

“I think we came out a little bit slow, and Boise State was able to take advantage of that,” Kellogg said. “But to our credit, the girls battled back and tied it up 1-1, it was key that we came back so quickly after Boise got on the board so they couldn’t go up 2-0. In the second half we made a couple more mistakes and Boise State, to their credit, the great team that they are, made us pay for it.”

There were a few players that really stood out in the game both for Boise State and UND. Boise State’s Katy Oehring stood out with her height and ability to get the ball. At 5-11, she was the tallest player on the field among both teams.

UND freshman Zoe Foster  played a very good game and really stepped it up when needed. She was able to outrun defenders on numerous occasions with her quick bursts of speed.

The one player that was very noticeable between both teams was UND’s goalkeeper Kristi Hestdalen, who made save after save with a total of 10, and kept her team in the game.

“There’s a reason why she’s our career-saves leader, because of days like today,” Kellogg said. “My only thought is that we have to step up on the shooters a bit quicker, to prevent her from making all of those saves. But I’m glad she’s back there to save us from time to time.”

The Green and White will have a few days off before they return to the field for their next game.

UND will have the week off and remain in Grand Forks until Friday when it will take on South Dakota at home to finish up home for the month of September.

The game will be Sept. 20 at 4 p.m. in Bronson Field.

Mariah Holland is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected].