The Jackrabbit (5-3-3, 3-1-1) soccer team looked to get back on track after struggling mightily during the last weeks in September.
The Jacks faced four opponents over the last two weeks, finishing with a 3-1 record. The Jacks managed to up their standing to 5-4-3, 3-1-1 in the Summit League.
On Oct. 5, the IPFW Mastodons visited Fishback Soccer Complex for Summit League play. On what could be described as a perfect night-70-degrees, a few clouds and no wind-the Jacks beat the Mastodons 4-0.
The Jackrabbit shot brigade was just getting started when six minutes later Farrell hit the back of an empty net on a shot off the goal post. Senior forward Kelsey Worcester found the goal halfway through the second half on a pass from junior midfielder Chelsea Goosen to put the Jacks solidly in command 4-0.
The perfect night did not end for one Jackrabbit after the final whistle blew. Senior Liz Lane, who suffered a season-ending knee injury against Iowa on Sept. 23, had an unexpected surprise waiting for her in the team huddle. Lane’s boyfriend, Chris Harvard, proposed to her in front of the team, and she accepted on the spot.
Two days later the IUPUI Jaguars, another conference foe, came to town. Senior midfielder Heather Hill got the Jacks on the board with a shot past IUPUI’s Jamie Farrell on a pass from Worcester.
In minute 51 of the game, MaryBeth McMillan scored for the Jags on a direct kick. Freshman midfielder Kaitlin Justice put the Jacks back in the lead on a powerful shot past Farrell, leaving the Jacks up 2-1.
The Jacks players were pleased with their performance. “We are learning each other’s strengths and weaknesses,” said SDSU’s junior defender Alex Schaller. “We’ve been playing together for a while, but we are learning new things.”
Staying in the Summit, the Jacks traveled to Western Illinois on Oct. 11. In minute 73, WIU Katelyn Wisner’s header went past Nicole Lograsso and gave the Westerwinds a 1-0 victory.
The final game pitted the Jacks against the Wolverines of Utah Valley State on Oct. 14. The game was very one-sided, as a goal by Tory Schiltgen made the final mark 7-1 in favor of SDSU.
The SDSU defense was really pleased with their keepers’ play. “We have great keepers back there that are really calm,” said Schaller. The keepers were not the only players being praised by the soccer family. “Our defense did a very good job. It was a collective effort,” said Lang Wedemeyer. “Our starting back four or five with Chelsea Goosen in there has been very good all year.”
Wins were hard to come by on the road, with two losses and one tie. The Jacks, after playing rival North Dakota State University on Oct. 18, will head on the road for the final games of the season.
“We haven’t won on the road yet, so that is going to be a test for us to see if we can come together and get results when we travel,” said Wedemeyer.
#1.883218:3114693360.JPG:soccer2.mg.JPG:Alex Schaller prepares to pass the ball off to another Jackrabbit during gameplay.:Mike Goetz