Minnesota Kicks Off Big Ten Season
Simone Kolander

Sept. 19, 2013

 Minnesota (7-1-0, 0-0-0) at Indiana (6-0-1, 0-0-0)
 Date/Time  Saturday, September 21 (6 p.m.)
 Location  Bloomington, Ind.
 Live Video  None
 Live Stats  Gametracker
 Official Sites  Minnesota | Indiana
 Social Media

 @GopherSoccer | Facebook

The Minnesota Golden Gophers took the show on the road this past weekend as they traveled to Florida to take on No. 9 Florida and Jacksonville University. The Gophers were able to improve their record to 7-1-0 with a loss to Florida and a win over Jacksonville.

On Friday, the Gophers fought to take down No. 9 Florida and their third consecutive SEC opponent but were unable to connect with the net. They held the Gators from scoring for 63 minutes before standout freshman Savannah Jordan tallied two goals in two minutes. This loss for the Gophers elevated the Gators to 6-1-0 on the season as the Gophers fell to 6-1-0. (Recap Here)

Sunday was a different story for the Gophers as they outscored the Dolphins and controlled the ball throughout the game. Scoring for the Gophers were Lauren Bauer, Steph Brandt and Katie Thyken. Both Bauer and Brandt were able to score their first goals of the season and Thyken recorded her fifth goal of the season. Assists played an important role in all three goals. MacKenzie Misel took the corner kick that allowed Bauer to score while Haley Helverson and Simone Kolander were able to help Brandt to the net. Thyken teamed up with Taylor Stainbrook for her goal in the second half. This was the second time that Stainbrook has fed the ball to the leading scorer and it has resulted in a goal for the Gophers. (Recap Here)

The Gophers will open Big Ten conference play with a match on the road against Indiana University on Saturday, Sept. 21 at 5:00 p.m. CT. This is Minnesota's second consecutive weekend on the road.

The Hoosiers remain unbeaten after their midweek match up with Xavier. Indiana was able to control most of the game as the statistics showed 29 shots to Xavier's seven. Goalkeeper Shannon Flower was able to make four saves to post a shutout for the Hooisers. Players to watch for the Hoosiers are sophomore Kayleigh Steigerwalt who has recorded a point in four straight games, Abby Smith who scored her fifth career winning goal against the Musketeers and the Hoosiers leading scorer, Lisa Nouanesengesy who scored her sixth goal of the season on Wednesday evening. (Indiana vs Xavier Recap)

When the Gophers and the Hoosiers met last year in mid-October, Minnesota was unable to surpass the Indiana defense. The Hoosiers defeated the Gophers 2-0 in Bloomington, Ind. This year the Gophers head back to Jerry Yeagley Field to battle unbeaten Indiana in the first game of Big Ten play. (2012 Recap)

A successful non-conference schedule has lead the Gophers to Big Ten play with a 7-1-0 record. This will allow the Gophers to go into conference play with confidence and an understanding of how the team plays under pressure. The best part about the start of the Big Ten season is that each team begins with a clean slate. At this point in the season, no matter their non-conference record, each team has the opportunity to step up and take control of the conference.

Junior co-captain Katie Thyken is leading the team in a variety of ways on and off the field. Thyken is the Gophers leading scorer as she has tallied five goals this season. She has also been a staple in other parts of the game as she leads the team in points (11), shots (15) as well as shots on goal (9). Thyken has also tallied one assist this season. It would be safe to say that Thyken has stepped up and lead the Gophers this season as she has become a staple offensively for the team.

Senior Steph Brandt knows what it is like to watch from the sidelines. Brandt, who has battled two ACL injuries during her time as a Gopher, is back in action as she begins to find her groove. After being sidelined for the most of last season, Brandt was able to return to the field this season and post her first goal last Sunday against Jacksonville.

For the second week in a row, the Gophers have found themselves in the rankings released Tuesday.Minnesota is ranked 24th by SoccerTimes.Com and 24st by SoccerAmerica. The Gophers also received 15 votes in the NSCAA rankings.

- Did you know that twelve different Gophers have tallied a goal or an assit this season?
- Did you know that Katie Thyken is only two goals away from her career-high seven goals that she set last season with eleven games to go?
- Did you know that during last weekend's match against Jacksonville 19 different players checked into the game for the Gophers?

With the reputation of being a tough home team, the Golden Gophers are looking to take advantageof their ten home games this fall. Last weekend, the Gophers had two victories at home bringing their overall record on their home pitch to 126-51-12. Minnesota looks to extend that home win count when they meet Ohio State and Penn State at home in October.

The game this weekend against Indiana will not be streamed for the public. The best way to keep up with the action is to follow @GopherSoccer for live game tweets and by following the score on GameTracker. 

The Gophers will spend the rest of September on the road but when the Gophers return to the Robbie the first weekend of October to take on Big Ten opponents Ohio State and Penn State, the Robbie will be rocking.

Friday, Oct. 4 - Ohio State - 7 p.m. - Purchase Tickets - Sanneh Foundation Game: Group ticket rate,clinic for kids on practice field, pizza after clinic, ball hand-off kids (2), halftime scrimmage/relay races, and post-game autographs. Celebrate senior Steph Brandt during her Community Day at the Robbie!

Sunday, Oct. 6 - Penn State - Rock the Robbie! - 1 p.m. - Purchase Tickets
Everyone gets in for $1! The first 500 fans get a special Rock the Robbie Rally Towel. Celebrate Lauren Bauer during her Community Day at the Robbie!

Students who want to support Gopher Soccer but do not have a car are in luck as the soccer student shuttle will continue throughout the remainder of the season. The shuttle will pick up in front of Mariucci Arena on the west side of Oak Street (between Mariucci Arena and TCF Bank Stadium.) Friday's pick up times are 6:00 and 6:30 p.m. for a 7:00 p.m. kickoff with drop off after the game. Sunday's pick up times are 12:30 and 1:00 p.m. for a 1:30 p.m. kickoff with drop off after the game. Maps can be found on our Facebook and Twitter pages. The next home game is October 4 against Ohio State.

Join the conversation by following us on Twitter @gophersoccer and using the hashtags #Gophers, #GopherSoccer and #TheRobbie. You can also find us on Facebook and "Like" our page! /GoldenGopherSoccer





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