On a cold and excessively windy night, the University of Minnesota women’s soccer team pulled out a double overtime 2-2 draw against Wisconsin in Madison, Wis. The Golden Gophers had a 2-0 lead early in the second half, but the Badgers fought back to force a stalemate in the 2011 Border Battle.
In the first half, the Gophers (4-6-2, 1-1-2 Big Ten) drew the tall task of not only defending against the Big Ten leading Badgers but also taking on the stiff wind.
With gusts of 25 miles per hour winds blowing in their faces, the Gophers showcased the beautiful game as they methodically moved the ball up the field with quick one-touch passes in the 25th minute.
Freshman Taylor Uhl made a shifty move to get by a Wisconsin (7-3-2, 2-0-2 Big Ten) defender, and she dribbled to the top of the 18-yard box where she slipped a ball through to Nicole Baier. The junior transfer then quickly ripped off a shot as she slid to the ground, but it was swatted away by UW goalkeeper Michele Dalton. Baier rapidly jumped up to regain possession of the deflected ball and struck a shot inside the left post to give the Maroon and Gold a 1-0 lead.
Minnesota would halt the Badgers’ first half attempts to even up the score and carry the 1-0 lead into the locker rooms.
In the second half the two foes switched sides and the Golden Gophers would waste time using the wind to their advantage.
In the 46th minute, Uhl once again dribbled to the top of the box, but this time the Eden Prairie, Minn. native launched a shot to the far left post to beat the Wisconsin keeper and increasing the Maroon and Gold’s lead to two-nil.
Uhl's goal gives her a team leading 17 points. She is also only the seventh freshman in Minnesota history to tally at least eight goals in her inaugural season.
The Badgers would come surging back as Lindsey Johnson would head in a Catie Sessions corner in the 59th minute to get Wisconsin on the board.
Three minutes later, UW knotted up the score at 2-2 when an Alev Kelter shot from 20 yards out got deflected by a Gopher defender and unluckily crept by a diving Cat Parkhill.
Parkhill faced a total of 14 Wisconsin shots and garnered a season high eight saves.
The two foes would keep the score knotted for the rest of the 90 minutes and force overtime, but neither team could escape with the Golden Goal victory.
The Maroon and Gold had a trio of opportunities in the second extra period, but the most glaring attempt came in the 108th minute when Steph Brandt had a one-on-one chance against Dalton from 8 yards out. The redshirt sophomore’s shot ended up going just over the crossbar and served as the final chance for either team.
Minnesota’s offensive charge for the game was headed by Baier and freshman Katie Thyken, who each recorded four shots on goal.
Tonight’s 2-2 outcome is the first draw ever in the Minnesota-Wisconsin series. It is also the Gophers’ second draw this season with the first coming at home against Ohio State on September 18.
Minnesota now heads back to St. Paul, Minn. for a Sunday morning matchup against 13-time defending Big Ten champion Penn State. The No. 24-ranked Nittany Lions come into Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium after defeating Ohio State 3-1 at home. Kickoff for Sunday’s game is scheduled for 11 a.m.