Women’s soccer wins in overtime thriller

By Krystal Megan

Women’s soccer handed the Ball State University Cardinals their first conference loss in a rematch of their Mid-American Conference quarterfinals matchup from Oct. 30, 2016.

The Huskies (7-5-2, 4-2-0 Mid-American Conference) defeated the Cardinals (6-6-2, 4-1-1 MAC), 3-2, on a game-winning goal from sophomore forward Kyleigh Dominguez in the 94th minute.

{{tncms-inline account=”LongHairFlare” html=”<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Me watching my <a href="https://twitter.com/NIUWomensSoccer?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NIUWomensSoccer</a> team go 2-0 on the weekend. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoDogs?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#GoDogs</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sixpoints?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sixpoints</a> <a href="https://t.co/YSwcHFflGY">https://t.co/YSwcHFflGY</a></p>— Natalia Peña (@LongHairFlare) <a href="https://twitter.com/LongHairFlare/status/917134130973937664?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">October 8, 2017</a></blockquote>” id=”917134130973937664″ type=”twitter”}}

Senior midfielder Allie Ingham centered the ball and Dominguez ran in behind to head it past Cardinals senior goalkeeper Alyssa Heintschel for the game-winner.

This was the second consecutive game the Huskies made a comeback to send the game into overtime and then quickly pull out the victory. Ingham scored the game-winner three minutes into overtime Thursday against Miami University. Ingham assisted on Dominguez’s game-winner Sunday.

Head Coach John Ross said the team is confident in any situation it is put in.

“Whether it be overtime or regular time, we understand what’s going on, and we know how much time we have,” Ross said. “We’re confident in those moments, and when the opportunity arises, they’re confident and they take care of business.”

Cardinals junior midfielder Lauren Roll’s initial shot was blocked, but she pounced on the rebound and gave Ball State the 1-0 lead in the eighth minute.

NIU senior forward Sammy O’Brien answered in the 17th minute when she broke away and fired a shot past Heintschel to tie the game at 1-1.

Ball State scored less than two minutes later when senior midfielder Abbe Allison shot a ball from 25 yards out that went off of senior goalkeeper Amy Annala’s fingertips and in.

Freshman goalkeeper Megan Donnally entered the match in the 27th minute to replace Annala, and along with the Huskies defense, did not allow another Ball State goal.

Ross said the reason for the switch at goalkeeper was to give the team a spark after a bit of a slow start, with the team not getting pressure on the ball.

“At that point, it had just turned 2-1, and [it] was an opportunity for us to get [Donnally] in and an opportunity to spark the team, and she did really well when she got in there,” Ross said.

{{tncms-inline account=”_krystalmegan” html=”<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Back to back wins for <a href="https://twitter.com/NIUWomensSoccer?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NIUWomensSoccer</a>! Second goals of the season for <a href="https://twitter.com/lgierman?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@lgierman</a> & Kyleigh Dominguez and first for <a href="https://twitter.com/sobrien20?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@sobrien20</a> 🐾🐾⚽️</p>— Krystal Megan (@_krystalmegan) <a href="https://twitter.com/_krystalmegan/status/917143188317511680?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">October 8, 2017</a></blockquote>” id=”917143188317511680″ type=”twitter”}}

Redshirt junior midfielder Lauren Gierman tied the game, 2-2, with three minutes left in regulation for the Huskies on a free kick just outside the box.

NIU outshot the Cardinals, 11-10, with the Huskies putting eight shots on frame and Ball State getting three on target.

The Cardinals held a 6-2 edge in corner kicks, and the Huskies committed 11 fouls to the Ball State’s 10.

The Huskies played without one of their top goal-scorers in junior forward Taylor Sarver and also without sophomore forward Abby Gregg. Both were healthy enough to play but were held out for precautionary reasons.

NIU will return to action 6 p.m. Friday to face the Kent State University Golden Flashes at the NIU Soccer and Track & Field Complex.