The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

    Tenacious game play delivers wide victory

    Renee Rosenow

    After gaining an early lead, the UW-Eau Claire women’s soccer team never looked back.

    Applying pressure immediately after kickoff, the Blugolds clearly wanted to prove a point to their opponent, St. Olaf (Minn.), and all of the teams they play for the rest of the season.

    “We wanted to send a message to our conference and to everyone else because we weren’t ranked high,” senior Amy Smith said. “We weren’t really given the respect we feel we deserve, and we have really high expectations for ourselves.”

    The Blugolds wasted no time getting on the scoreboard, as Smith tapped in the ball through the goalkeeper’s legs in the fifth minute.

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    “I think it took the pressure off the team,” Smith said. “And it really helped us relax too, because after we were able to get seven more.”

    The team continued to pound shots at the St. Olaf keeper, but fell short until the 36th minute. Freshmen Lisa Marco was able to finish on a breakaway opportunity, after nearly scoring just one minute earlier.

    Marco was able to add to the Blugolds’ lead, with a goal in the 41st minute. As Marco entered the goal box, she ripped a shot to the far post, for the most exciting goal of the game. Coach Sean Yengo used one word to describe the goal, “wow.”

    Coming out of the half, the Blugolds continued to dominate the offensive end of the field. Smith quickly added her second goal of the game in the 47th minute, and brought her season point total to six in just four games.

    Yengo described Smith as one of the team’s leaders and a very hard worker.

    “Her work ethic is something that allows her to get open,” he said. “It helps create opportunities for herself and her teammates.”

    Again in the 57th minute, Eau Claire was able to add to their lead as senior Allison Muer was able to put away a penalty kick, and increase the lead to five.

    Finally in the 68th minute, St. Olaf was able to get on the board, after a shot that cracked off the post that was tapped in from a yard away.

    Sophomore Ali Mater answered just five minutes later with a blistering shot, taking back all of the momentum in the game.

    “It felt really good,” Mater said. “Especially after coach took me aside in practice yesterday and told me to be more aggressive.”

    St. Olaf added a goal in the 80th minute, but the moment was quickly overshadowed. The Blugolds added two goals in the final four minutes by sophomore Jamie Schiesel and senior Jessica Millard, increasing the final score to 8-2.

    “I feel like this is the first time we really put together all of the things we’ve been working on in practice,” Yengo said. “It was just a solid performance from start to finish.”

    The Blugolds improve to 3-0-1 on the season, and will start conference play on Saturday after a very strong start to the season. After the game Yengo told his team that, “today is the day we start to realize our potential.”

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    Tenacious game play delivers wide victory