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The 2017 Minnesota soccer season was a season to remember for many. Six seniors commanded a team that broke records, scored in bunches, and finished in the top-two of the Big Ten for the second straight season.
The 2017 class of seniors was a class that was not only leaders in practice, but a talented class on the game field. Between the six of them, 95 games were started and 27 of the 41 goals this season were scored by fourth year Gophers. Ten of the 11 game-winning goals during the 2017 campaign came off a senior foot, including five by Sydney Squires, tying her for the second most in a single season in program history.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) October 19, 2017
Squires was able to finish her career with 31 goals, including 14 this past season to co-lead the Big Ten, which is seventh most in program history. She also added 11 assists in her four years as a Gopher.
Senior Julianna Gernes tore through the Big Ten season in 2017, scoring seven of her nine goals during a 10 game conference stretch. Gernes was second on the team in points this season with 21, and had the highest shot on goal percentage of any qualifying players (min. of 10 shots on goal).
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) October 26, 2017
As a senior captain, Tori Burnett started in 18 games this season, and started in 64 straight games over the past three seasons. Burnett assisted on two goals this season and helped the Gophers back line to one of its most impressive statistical seasons in program history.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) October 27, 2017
Alongside Burnett was Maddie Gaffney. The senior started in all 19 games, and started in the last 63 straight games. She played in 71 career games and scored four goals, including three game-winning goals like the one below against Providence this year with under a minute remaining.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) September 6, 2017
Senior Megan Koenig made one of the biggest jumps on the team in 2017. The senior made all 19 of her career starts as a senior, and scored a pair of goals and added three assists. Koenig was also named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team this season.
— NCAA Soccer (@NCAASoccer) August 23, 2017
Kellie McGahn played in all 19 games for the Gophers this season. McGahn scored one goal, and assisted on three more. She appeared in 79 games for Minnesota in her career, and scored four goals and assisted on six more.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) October 27, 2017
The Back Line
The Minnesota Golden Gophers were not only the most prolific offense in the Big Ten, but their defense was arguably more impressive. Minnesota throughout the regular season led the conference in shots allowed and shots on goal. The backline, that included two seniors, has drawn 178 offside calls in the past 64 games.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) September 14, 2017
In Good Hands
The 2017 senior class leaves the Gopher soccer program in some capable hands. Nine non-seniors scored in 2017, including four from junior April Bockin. Bockin also led the entire NCAA with 12 assists in 2017, and earned Third Team All-Big Ten honors.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) October 23, 2017
On top of Bockin’s outstanding passing, Molly Fiedler was also impactful. The Second Team All-Big Ten honoree had eight assists, including six during Big Ten play which was second most during that time behind only Bockin. Fiedler has also made 64 straight starts, and will have a chance to break the record for consecutive starts in 2018.
As a captain in 2017, junior Emily Heslin achieved her personal goal of scoring a pair of goals and adding two assists by posting three goals and two assists. Heslin scored two of her three goals on free kicks, and added a streaking goal in the 7-1 victory over Michigan State.
Records Are Made To Be Broken
Minnesota's back line wasn't the only impressive part of the team, the offense led the Big Ten throughout the regular season, closing with the best goals/game average (2.16), assists/game average (2.37) along with second most shots/game (15.84). Routinely Minnesota's offense produced highlight plays, like this one on the Big Ten Network against Michigan.
— NCAA Soccer (@NCAASoccer) September 22, 2017
Squires broke numerous records with her 14 goals this season including tying the most goals in a single game with four against Iowa State. The four goals for Squires was the first time a player at Minnesota had a hat trick since 2012. Squires was named the Gophers first-ever NCAA Player of the Week and United Soccer Coaches Player of the Week. The 14 goals from the Hudson, Wis. native tied a pair of Gophers for the eighth most in a single-season.
Bockin’s 12 assists tied Laurie Seidl for the third most in a single-season, including her four assists in the Michigan State victory, which tied her for the most in a single match.
The seven goals against Michigan State was the most the Gophers have ever scored against a Big Ten opponent. Minnesota scored 41 goals as a team this season, the second straight year the team posted more than 40 goals and 11th time in program-history.
The Gophers five-game winning streak during the 2017 season, that spanned from Sept. 24 to Oct. 11, was the third straight season where the team has won five straight games.
Golan Reaches 100 Wins at Minnesota
Head Coach Stefanie Golan has only been a head coach for eight years, and six of those at the University of Minnesota. In that short time, Golan has won 105 games in her career, and has won 72 games at Minnesota. Golan reached her 100th win when the Gophers took down No. 16 Rutgers on Sept. 29. Prior to Minnesota, she posted a 33-18-10 record in three and a half years at the US Military Academy and earned Patriot League Coach of the Year honors in 2010.
Minnesota will be in action in the spring with their annual spring competition. Be sure to follow the Gophers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so you do not miss any content this offseason.
— Minnesota Soccer (@GopherSoccer) October 8, 2017
Heslin, Peterson Named 2018 Captains
12/8/2017 - W. Soccer
Head Coach Stefanie Golan announced that 2018 seniors Emily Heslin and Emily Peterson will lead the Maroon and Gold.
B1G Recognizes 95 Gophers For Academics
12/6/2017 - W. Soccer
Ninety-five University of Minnesota student-athletes have earned Academic All-Big Ten honors, announced Wednesday by the conference office.
Pair of Gophers Earn Regional Honors
11/29/2017 - W. Soccer
The United Soccer Coaches named a pair of University of Minnesota soccer players to the All-Midwest Region Teams yesterday.