The Minnesota Golden Gopher soccer team finished its two-game exhibition season Wednesday night with a 0-0 tie against the Drake Bulldogs in Des Moines, Iowa. The Gophers limited Drake to just two shots on goal the entire night, but could not push across a score of their own.
Battling rain the entire evening, including a torrential downpour for much of the second period, Minnesota managed seven shots on the night, five of which came on goal and six in the second half alone. Kelly Wepking led the Gophers with two shots, both on goal, while upperclassmen Carlie Edwards and Clare Grimwood notched one shot apiece. Freshmen Kylie Kallman, Katie Bethke and Angie Olson picked up the remainder of the shot attempts for Minnesota.
"The newcomers have been tremendous and shown a lot of improvement, just in the few days we've had them here," head coach Mikki Denney Wright said about the play of her freshmen. "I'm really glad they've gotten this opportunity to show what they can do."
Gophers Kelsey Hood, Julie Rezac and Jenny Clark did not play in the contest due to injuries. All three will be available for the Gophers' regular season opener next Friday.
Chelsey Turner played the entire 90-minute game in net after splitting duties in the team's first exhibition match-up last Saturday, grabbing two saves. The Gophers limited the Bulldogs to just one shot attempt in the first period.
For the Bulldogs, Sarah Foote led the way with four shot attempts, including one on goal. Crystal Townsend had the other shot on goal for Drake.
"I thought we played a very good game and made some major improvements from the South Dakota State game," Denney Wright said. "I'm really proud that we limited them to only two shots for the entire game. The next step for our players is to finish the final piece and I think we're close to doing that."
Wednesday's match was the team's final exhibition contest of 2007. After returning home for eight more days of training, they will travel to Knoxville, Tenn. next Friday, Aug. 31 to open their regular season in the Tennessee Lady Vol Classic. In the Classic, the Gophers will square off against Central Florida on Friday and the nationally-ranked Lady Vols on Sunday. Minnesota begins its home season Sept. 14 against Dayton in the Gopher Invitational.