First off, tonight is game night!
The Gophers have also released their official 2015 Soccer Intro Video.
Now back to the review portion of this article.
The Minnesota Gophers Soccer team kicked off their season a week ago (8/21/2015) by defeating the NDSU Bison at home 3-0. Junior Captain Simone Kolander scored two goals in three minutes for the Gophers to take a 2-0 lead at half time. Her first goal game off an assist from fellow junior Josee Stiever while the second game from her fellow captain, Senior Haley Helverson. In the second half sophomore Sydney Squires got in the action by scoring the final goal of the game, again on an assist by Stiever. Star goalie Tarah Hobbs (junior) got the shutout. The Gophers dominated the stat game winning shots (23-3), corner kicks (6-3) and fouls (6-14).
The good news, 2 days later NDSU took the #14 Wisconsin Badgers to overtime before losing 2-1.
You call 0-0 decent? Yes I do. In only the second game of the season the Gophers, ranked #52, faced a top 25 team in the #23 Kansas Jayhawks. The Gophers held their own in all categories against the Jayhawks going 10-13 in shots, 10-12 in cornor kicks, and 8-16 in fouls. Hobbs got her second shutout of the year with 8 saves. Coach Stefanie Golan said the following:
"This was a typical Sunday game for us," "Sundays are a little tough of a grind and this was definitely a step-up in terms of the caliber of our opponent and we had a tough time dealing with the physicality and the pressure." "Slowly but surely, we developed a rhythm and the longer the game went on, the more apparent it was that we are a good team and we created some good looks," "The only thing we didn't do today was put it into the back of the net." "I think it's a really positive point for us not having not starting out as strong as we wanted then continually getting better throughout the course of the game," "We'll take a lot of notes from this game and use them all as we prep for the road."
The bad news is that the Jayhawks had lost to Nebraska earlier that weekend (Friday) 3-0 and only tied NDSU in an exhibition match the week before. Maybe the Jayhawks did not deserve the #23 ranking.
The good news, Hobbs was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week for week one of the season.
Tonight is the first game in a 4 game road series. The Gophers are now ranked #36 (tied with North Texas & Arkansas) in the Coaches Poll having received 9 votes. This weekend has the Gophers playing in 2 games in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The first game is against Stephen F. Austin (0-1-0) tonight at 5 pm while the second is against LSU (1-0-0) on Sunday at 1 pm. Will the Gophers survive the heat? Tonights kickoff is expected to be the high of the day at 91° F while kickoff on Sunday will be 87° but will be back up to 91° by the time the game is over. #UNBREAKABLE.
Required Reading & State Fair
John Marthaler of the Star Tribune has a very good article on the Gophers and how currently they are the top level of women's soccer in the state.
Kevin Duchschere of the Star Tribune has an article on St. Paul's bid to get Minnesota United to build their new stadium in St. Paul.
Gophersports.com lists when the different sports teams will be at the State Fair. The Gopher Soccer team will be there on Monday, August 31st at 1 pm.