Jacks grow through tough road trip

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The SDSU women’s soccer team struggled to get anything going against two Big Ten opponents over the weekend, falling 5-0 to the Wisconsin Badgers and 2-0 to Minnesota Gophers.

SDSU opened the weekend at the No. 19 Badgers on Friday night. From the onset it was all Badgers as Cara Walls scored for Wisconsin just six minutes into the game. The crooked numbers continued from there as they outshot the Jacks 24-4 for the game, adding their second goal after a foul on goalkeeper Nicole Inskeep set up a free kick for Kinley McNicoll.

“Wisconsin was an excellent team and very dangerous in the attack,” said head coach Lang Wedemeyer. “They took a lot of shots from the outside.”

Inskeep made six saves and allowed four goals in the game before Wedemeyer lifted her for senior Elisa Stamatakis in the second half. Injured last year and backing up Inskeep to start the season, Stamatakis was not a stranger to the net, having made 33 career starts there earlier in her SDSU career.  

“Nikki [Inskeep] had suffered from a little bit of an injury so we felt like we needed to rest her a little bit,” Wedemeyer said. “Elisa has been playing well so we have confidence in both goalkeepers, so we decided to give Nikki a break and give an opportunity to Elisa, and she did pretty well.”

Stamatakis also earned the start against Minnesota on Sunday in a game that was slightly more competitive, though the Jacks still found themselves outshot 21-7.  Only five of those were on shots on goal though, compared to three shots on goal for the Jacks.

Going forward Wedemeyer would not yet declare who would start at goalkeeper the next time out, saying that it would depend on how things went in practice and how Inskeep felt.

Another position still up in the air is the third midfielder position where freshman Jennie Scislow started on Friday and fellow freshman Tori Poole got the start on Sunday.

“I think we’re still trying to figure out what the best group could be,” Wedemeyer said. “We’ve just got to give it time, but all of those girls are doing well and they are getting better with each game.”

Wedemeyer said that there was certainly some disappointment over how the weekend went, but that the Jacks had known it would be tough going in and they can still take some things away from the weekend.

“I think that any time you have the chance to measure yourself against quality teams like Wisconsin and Minnesota it gives you a lot of feedback about where your team is,” Wedemeyer said. “We didn’t play as well as we could have but we definitely took a step forward.”

SDSU will look to take that next step as they begin a three-game home stretch, beginning Friday, Sept. 5 at 6 p.m. when they host the Drake Bulldogs at Fishback Soccer Park.

“It’s always a tough team,” Wedemeyer said of Drake. “They’re physical. The game is always decided by one goal here or there.”