Women’s soccer loses on late goal


Sophomore defender Jennie Nailor (left) dribbles against the Northern Iowa defender Friday at home. The Huskies lost the game 3-2. 

By Krystal Megan

DeKALB — Women’s soccer battled but could not complete the comeback against the University of Northern Iowa Panthers Friday at the NIU Soccer and Track & Field Complex.

The Huskies (3-3-1, 0-0 Mid-American Conference) fell to the Panthers 3-2 on a go-ahead goal with 30 seconds left in the match.

Senior forward Sarah Brandt notched her second goal of the game when she headed in the game-winning goal for the Panthers off of a cross from sophomore forward Sydney Hayden.

Despite the loss, Head Coach John Ross said once the Huskies got going, he was happy with how aggressive his team was playing.

“We were challenging for all the 50-50 balls,” Ross said. “We were able to create some things off set pieces. We were able to get the ball into their end. It’s a very good team that we’re playing here in [Northern Iowa], and I think minus the first two goals of the game we matched them, and if not, did a little bit better at times.”

The Huskies found themselves in an early 2-0 hole as the Panthers struck first.

Freshman forward Johnnie Hill knocked in the first goal for the Panthers in minute 33, and Brandt kicked in her first goal of the game in minute 44.

The Huskies answered just before halftime when freshman midfielder Allie Fullriede scored her first collegiate goal to make it a 2-1 game. Freshman defender Haley Hoppe headed the initial ball in from a throw-in, and Fullriede finished it off.

Ross said he has been impressed with the freshman class this year.

“[Hoppe] started [Friday] at center back and had an outstanding game,” Ross said. “She’s done a lot for us. Allie Fullriede had a really good game as well coming off the bench [and] giving us a spark. [Fullriede] is a kid that can score goals. We just need to find some minutes for her, and [Friday] we found a couple minutes for her and she really capitalized on it.”

NIU tied the game at 2-2 in minute 77 when sophomore defender Lauren Neslund scored her first collegiate goal. The initial attempt rebounded to Neslund and she was able to rocket it in goal.

“It says a lot about the character of this group,” Ross said, “Being down 2-0, they could’ve definitely packed it in [but] they were fighting even harder. [The team] really made things happen out there and allowed us to get momentum.”

The Huskies finished MAC play last season with a 3-6-2 record and a trip to the MAC Championship.

The Huskies start conference play 6 p.m. Friday as they travel to Akron, Ohio to face the University of Akron Zips. NIU faced Akron once last year and tied them Oct. 14, 2016 at home.

The Huskies will head to Buffalo, New York to battle the University at Buffalo Bulls 11 a.m. Sunday.