Oct. 21, 2012
ATHENS, Ohio - The Northern Illinois women's soccer team posted the majority of the chances in the match at Ohio, outshooting its foe 17-10, but were enable to counter punch a Bobcat goal in the 62nd minute and fell, 1-0. NIU is now 7-8-2 this season and 3-5-2 MAC with one match remaining in the regular season.
"We were OK times today and we had our moments in the match," said Head Coach John Ross, "we had our dangerous moments moving forward, but once we moved into the attack, we weren't dangerous when we got there."
The teams played to a scoreless draw in the first half lead by good defensive play by the goalkeepers in the match. NIU keeper Amy Carr (Hemel Hempstead, England/Townsend Church of England) made three saves in the opening stanza, while OU goalkeeper Mattie Liston made one save. Defender Courtney Ksiazek (Naperville/Neuqua Valley) forced Liston to make the save in the 32nd minute.
"We did a good job of keeping Ohio pinned in their own end and did that with strong play from our outside backs and playing well in the air from the midfield on 50/50 chances," added Ross.
Huskie midfielder Allie McBride (Naperville/Neuqua Valley) opened the second half with a shot that was blocked by the Ohio defense in the 48th minute, followed by another by Nicole Gobbo (Bartlett) seconds later, saved by Liston. In the 55th minute, freshman Mackenzie Lewis (Woodbury, Minn./East Ridge) fired another shot on frame, once again saved by Ohio's keeper.
Seven minutes later in the tilt, NIU committed a foul in a dangerous position on the pitch. Ohio's Erin Feeney set herself to take the free kick and fired into the box. Carr misplayed the ball and Bobcat Cat Rogers found the loose ball ball in the box, placing it in net to give Ohio the upper hand, 1-0.
The Huskies turned the pressure up in their attack following the goal, posting eight shots in the final 28 minutes of the contest. Gobbo tested Liston in the 70th minute but Liston came up with the save to keep the match in Ohio's favor. She finished with four saves to her credit.
Northern Illinois made one final push to equalize in the final seconds of the match by earning a corner kick. Junior Cori Frankenberg (Appleton, Wis./East) sent the ball in from the corner with seven seconds remaining, setting up outside back Lauren Solomon (Orland Park/Carl Sandburg) for the final shot with only seconds remaining. Solomon fired but sailed the shot high of the crossbar to end the match.
Following the contest, Ross stressed the urgency of the team's final match Thursday at Toledo. "We need to get after it this week in training and prepare for Toledo. Our playoffs start Thursday and we need to go into this week with that mindset."
Northern Illinois will close the season thursday afternoon at Toledo. Kickoff is slated for 2 p.m. Central time.