Women’s Soccer suffers first loss

Women’s Soccer opened MIAC play with a victory over Macalester College Tuesday, September 13. The Gusties shutout the Scots by a final score of 2-0 to record their fifth shutout on the season.

With that win, Gustavus moved to 4-0-1 (1-0 MIAC) on the season while Macalester fell to 3-1-1 (0-1 MIAC).

Goalkeeper Ashley Becker made five saves to keep the shutout theme rolling. Becker and the Gusties have yet to allow through five games.

“We battled hard,” Head Coach Laura Burnett-Kurie said. “There were a lot of momentum shifts in the game. For a period of time I thought we controlled the tempo, and then Macalester would control it. In the second half, we were smart and we finished strong.”

Gustavus got on the board at the 34th minute of the first period. Jana Elliot squeezed the ball through the Macalester defenders, giving Paula Miller a partial breakaway as she put home her second goal of the season.

The Gusties and Macalester traded chances throughout the game but the Gusties smart and consistent defensive play shutdown the Scots. Gustavus led Macalester in shots (11-10) and shots on goal (6-5).

Late in the second period, Emily Skogseth made some nice moves to get past Macalester defenders and centered the ball to Grace Brustad, who put in her first collegiate goal.

“We talk a lot about building our soccer IQ and our all-around play so when we’re in games like today, they understand what to do,” Burnett-Kurie said. “It was awesome to get a goal in the last minute or so to kind of seal it.”

The Gusties now have 14 different players who have found their names in the season scoring column, using their team depth to their advantage.

“Being able to have a lot of players put the ball in the back of the net and knowing that we don’t need to rely on one or two individuals is great for us. Having so much depth on our bench allows us to play a lot of players and keep our legs fresh,” Burnett-Kurie said.

Next the Gusties continue conference play as they head to Northfield, Minn. Saturday at 1 p.m. to take on rival St. Olaf College.

“It was a great learning experience for us. We knew this year was going to be tough and we have to find an edge to our game in order to win.” — Coach Burnett-Kurie

“We know that Macalester is a top contender in the MIAC so it was a good test for us in our first conference game,” Burnett-Kurie said. “We just have to take it one game at a time because everyone in the MIAC knows that it’s super competitive from top to bottom. It was great to be able to battle at that level and now we’re setting the tempo for St. Olaf on Saturday.”

Unfortunately, that level of competition proved to be too much in the following game, as Gustavus suffered its first loss of the season at St. Olaf by the score of 3-1, dropping to 4-1-1 overall and 1-1-0 in the MIAC. The three goals against also marked the first goals scored against the Gusties all season.

“One loss isn’t going to break our season, but now we need to see how well we can rebound.” — Coach Burnett-Kurie

“St. Olaf definitely deserved the win,” Burnett-Kurie said. “It was a great learning experience for us. We knew this year was going to be tough and we have to find an edge to our game in order to win. We ended up turning it on and had some moments, but we didn’t have those players step up that need to step up. It’s a great learning opportunity for us to realize that we need those players to step up.  One loss isn’t going to break our season, but now we need to see how well we can rebound.”

The Oles wasted little time getting on the scoreboard as they scored the first goal in the eighth minute. Six minutes later the Oles added another goal off a corner kick to take a 2-0 advantage. Another St. Olaf corner kick resulted in the third goal of the game as a header found the back of the net in the 22nd minute.

The Gusties broke the shutout in the 28th minute as Abby Mullenbach scored her first collegiate goal, assisted by Josie Mazzone. Neither team could find the goal in the second half and the home team walked away with a 3-1 victory.

Ashley Becker suffered her first loss of the season after making seven saves.

Gustavus will look to learn from their first loss and bounce back against non-conference opponent UW-Eau Claire next Thursday.