Golden Gophers Top the Wolf Pack 4-1 The Minneosta soccer team defeated Nevada 4-1 in the Minnesota Gold Classic.
St. Paul, Minn. - Four different players found the net as the University of Minnesota soccer team proved to be too much for visiting Nevada today (Sept. 18), posting a 4-1 win over the Wolf Pack in the Minnesota Gold Classic.
"I think out execution was very very good," head coach Mikki Denney Wright said. "Our speed of play was incredible and I thought the first 20 minutes we were overwhelming, so that's a lot of fun."
It was exciting in the early goings as the Golden Gophers got the scoring started right away. Angie Olson (Eagan, Minn.) took a pass from Katie Bethke (Eau Claire, Wis.) just 3:45 into the match and found the back of the net to put her team up 1-0. The goal was the second of the season for Olson, and becomes the fastest goal this season for the Golden Gophers. Olson has Minnesota's two quickest goals out of the gate this season, as her first came just 4:10 into the match against South Dakota State in the opener on Aug. 21.
Nearly 40 minutes of scoreless play went by before the Golden Gophers got on the board again. After making the move from defense to forward in the offseason, Dana Tripp (White Bear Lake, Minn.) collected her first career goal at the 41:24 mark tonight. Off a rebound in front of Nevada goalkeeper Dana Moreno, Tripp took a pass from Julie Rezac (Eden Prairie, Minn.) and beat the out-of-position keeper for the score. Tripp was immediately surrounded by her teammates in celebration after the score - which eventually help up as the game-winner.
Minnesota (5-2-1) went up 3-0 before Nevada (2-6-0) managed to get on the board in the back end of the second half. Freshman Marissa Price (Apple Valley, Minn.) continued the quick scoring theme of the night with a goal just under five minutes into the second half. The goal was also the first if her young career for Price and put the Golden ahead by the three-score margin.
At the 70:33 mark, Nevada managed to avoid the shutout when Jill Erickson was able to sneak a free kick from over 20-yards out past the outstretched hands of Minnesota goalkeeper Cat Parkhill (Apple Valley, Minn.). Parkhill finished with three saves in the match, including key stops on some hard-shot, well placed balls.
Sara Clancy (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) put the cap on the day with the game's final goal with just under three minutes to play. Right in front of the net, Clancy beat the goalkeeper to put her team up 4-1. In four home matches now on the season, the Golden Gophers have put four points on the board in three of them. The win also extends Minnesota's current unbeaten streak at The Robbie to 16, with a 15-0-1 mark that dates back to the beginning of last season. The victory is the third in their last four matches for Minnesota, following a narrow loss in their last match.
"I think they are just working on getting better each week and we really turned a corner in a lot of different ways this week," Denney Wright said. "I think the group after last week learned a lot about themselves and they have a sense of urgency which is important."
The sense of urgency that Denney Wright mentioned was apparent, as the Golden Gophers kept the heat on Wolf Pack all night. Minnesota held Nevada without a shot attempt in the first half. The Wolf Pack garnered just five for the game, compared to the 23 that the Golden Gophers put on, which is just one shy of their season high. In corner kicks, the stat line was equally disimilar. Minnesota finished the game with 15 corners, while Nevada was able to muster only two.
The attendance at Robbie Stadium was 1,670 this evening making this game the second most attended in Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium history, second only to the 1,751 who packed the stands on Sept. 23, 2005 to watch Minnesota play Purdue.
The Golden Gophers will look to make it two in a row when they host Montana on Sept. 20 in the final match of the Minnesota Gold Classic at 12:30 p.m. Montana won the first match of the day today, posting a 4-1 win over North Dakota. In the early match Sunday, North Dakota takes on Nevada at 10:00 a.m.