7-1: How UND Soccer Soared Past Purdue Fort Wayne

(Photo Credit:Russ Hons-FightingHawks.com)

Today, UND came in just outside of the Summit League Tournament picture in sixth place. Seven goals and their biggest conference victory in the Division one era vaulted the Fighting Hawks right back into postseason contention. Katie Moller lead the way with four goals, establishing herself as the most prolific goal scorer for UND in its NCAA Division One existence. Olivia Knox started things off with two goals, further reinforcing her superb rise as a sensational goal-scoring freshman for UND, and Veronica Kessler contributed her second salvo of the season to provide the final goal scoring tally for UND. Deanna Hecht provided the sole goal for the Mastadons of Purdue Fort Wayne with 2:15 left in the game on a nice move and sensational finish.

How Did This Happen?

Well, look no further than shorts and shots on goal for UND. They finished with 15 shots on net in 90 minutes of play. The Fighting Hawks played relentless throughout the entire game. 80 percent of UND’s starting field players recorded at least one shot and all of UND was able to provide depth to their offensive game today. Even though she did not score, Mimi Eiden had another impressive game today. She came inches from scoring on a rebound but was ruled down on an offside call. As always, Eiden’s speed is a great asset for UND to have and has constantly helped her teammates in creating lanes for them to score. As for Moller, we are running out of adjectives to describe how good she is at scoring goals and generating offense. She contributed to five of the seven UND goals today. Moller had four goals and one assist and came very close to being the first UND soccer player to ever score five goals in one game on a few occasions.

Now What? 

UND has almost a week to get ready for superb Summit League side South Dakota State. They take on SDSU this Friday at home in their final home match of the season. Look for SDSU to challenge the back line of UND a bit more consistently than the Mastodons did today. As a result, look for the Fighting Hawks to try more of their same style. Expect them to take the play to SDSU and try to score early and defend as needed. If UND can compete with NDSU and almost win, then they can play with absolutely any team in the conference. Friday will be a fun matchup.

NDSU Soccer Utilizes Possession Game to Defeat UND 2-1: A Recap

(Photo Credit: Russ Hons-FightingHawks.com)

On Sunday in East Grand Forks, North Dakota faced their long time rival NDSU. This time it meant a  lot more. This was the first Division One conference match between the two as Summit League rivals. This game was a contrast between two disparate styles of soccer. NDSU plays a possession game and generates quick chances on counters. UND plays a speed game and looks to run by their opponents. We saw both of those styles on display today.

In the end, NDSU and their style won the day. UND struck first in the second, after a scoreless first half. Katie Moller took a feed from Olivia Knox and deposited one in the back of the net. That was Moller’s tenth tally this season. That goal came 51:11 into the match. Roughly 24 minutes later NDSU was pressuring and forced UND netminder to come off her line to play the ball. She could not get to it and Holly Enderle found Hanna Norman for the equalizer.

The game would not remain tied for long as Malley O’Brien was able to  convert a feed from Holly Enderle to provide the final margin. UND had more chances in the second but was only able to convert once. Olivia Swenson finished the day with five saves, and NDSU netminder Monica Polgar finished with four.

Now UND has to get ready for a tough Summit League road trip against Omaha and Denver. UND has experience playing against teams that like to hold possession in Portland and NDSU. The next challenge will be utilizing their superb depth of speed to play the game on their terms. The result was not what they wanted today, but they picked up some things they can learn from. Look for UND to try to take today’s lessons forward as they head out on the road next weekend.

Fighting Hawks Soar Past Western Illinois 5-0 and Prepare For NDSU Sunday: A Recap and Look Ahead

(Photo Credit: Russ Hons-FightingHawks.com)

Coming into today, the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks soccer team had scored 1 goal in its past two games. This team was generating multiple chances against Portland and Oral Roberts, but was only able to put away one chance on a long Brittany Muller salvo on the road against Oral Roberts to give UND their first Summit League victory.

Today against Western Illinois, UND converted multiple chances on its way to a 5-0 win and a 2-0 Summit League record. Of the 11 shots on goal for the Fighting Hawks, five found their way to the back of the net. Mimi Eiden opened the goal scoring account today in the 28th minute as she was the only Fighting Hawk able to generate a goal in the first half. Four different Fighting Hawks scored in the second half to provide the final margin of victory. Brittany Muller scored her second in two games, Olivia Knox scored her second goal of the season, Cassie Giddings deposited her fifth goal of the season, and Emma Bangert contributed her second to round out the scoring for UND.

The scoreline was not indicative of how this game could have gone, the Leathernecks had three shots on goal in the first, and a few grade-a looks that forced UND netminder Olivia Swenson to be on her game.

With this superb win, which UND Head Coach Chris Logan noted that this was the best he has seen his team play all season, now what for UND?  They take on North Dakota State University this Sunday at home at 1 PM.

To this point, this is the biggest game in UND’s season as the Bison are in the mix for a top four spot in the Summit League. The top four teams make the conference tournament. Last season, UND came close to making its conference tournament but due to having a few too many ties they came up just short of their goal. They have a chance to win another match against NDSU on their home pitch this Sunday. The Bison played UND tough last year but a superb Emma Contino free kick goal and excellent defense gave UND the win on the road.

If the Fighting Hawks can keep utilizing their depth scorers like Muller, and continue to see young stars like Cassie Giddings and Mimi Eiden emerge along side senior star striker, Katie Moller, Sunday could produce a favorable outcome for UND. Regardless, look for the sterling defense of this team and its desire to win games on the attack to be what UND uses to go far. Sunday can’t come soon enough. Look for UND to prepare for the Bison on set pieces, as Logan noted the Bison’s prowess in utilizing set pieces to generate chances and goals this year.

Magnificient Moller: How Katie Moller’s Hat Trick Helped UND Fly to 3-0 Win Over Minnesota Duluth

(Photo Credit: Russ Hons-FightingHawks.com)

Last week, the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks learned more about their team in Montana. They did not concede a goal in 210 minutes of play, improved their defense, and utilized opportunistic strikes from their forwards to take the first game against Idaho. Against Montana on UM’s home turf, they were able to come within inches of an extra-time penalty kick and win with their depth and speed, combined with more superb play from netminder Olivia Swenson.

Today, the team was able to draw on their goal-scorer extraordinaire, senior forward Katie Moller to propel them to the victory.Her three goals now give her six tallies on the season. She earned the first hat trick for this program since 2010 when Rachel Loomis scored three goals against South Carolina State.

Moller’s goals came from three different fighting Hawks. Megan Wright, Ashley Ebeling, and Cassie Giddings all contributed to Katie’s superb day. In addition, these goals each showcased how Moller is able to deal with oppenents,either with speed or by winning battles. She won a battle on a throw in and did not miss for her second score, and was able to use her precision shot on the first and third goals to provide the difference for UND.

As for the rest of the game, Head Coach Chris Logan noted that Minnesota Duluth played quite well. Without Moller on the field this result may have been a bit different. In addition, give credit to the entire UND team for playing sound defense. While they gave up a lot of chances, as Minnesota Duluth had 12 shots total, only six of those were able to get on goal to goalie Olivia Swenson. She has earned the starting job through her consistent play and ability to help set up attacks for UND.

Unlike previous years where she started, Swenson is not being asked to make 15 or more saves a game. She praises her defense at every chance she can, and because of them has less work each game. Thanks to UND’s ability to limit chances on net, the Fighting Hawks will be competitive in the games they play the rest of the way.

The next test for the Fighting Hawks comes Sunday at 2 PM against Bemidji State. The Beavers’ team speed will be the biggest thing UND has to contend with on the fast turf surface this Sunday.

Three Quick Thoughts on UND Soccer’s Preseason Opener 5-1 Victory:Beyond The Box Score

Last night, the University of North Dakota Soccer team got off to a fast start in their preseason opener against the University of Manitoba Bisons. They won the game 5-1 on a goal eight seconds in from Katie Moller, and a superb showing by freshman playing their first game helped spur the Fighting Hawks to an exhibition win.

  1. When the coaching staff mentioned which recruits that would contribute this year, each of them had a different answer. Head Coach Chris Logan’s answer of Olivia Knox proved very timely yesterday. She had a superb game getting multiple chances and using her speed to keep the offense going. Knox had two goals and an assist. The goals came from her crashing the net on a free kick rebound, and drawing a foul in the box. Knox converted the penalty kick she earned.
  2. Although she did not score a goal, Mimi Eiden, sophomore forward used her speed on the fast turf surface at East Grand Forks to setup numerous chances. The coaching staff was impressed with the winter and spring seasons she had, the 423 fans at last night’s game can understand why. We all knew that Eiden plays fast and uses her speed to generate chances, this turf field could propel her to even greater heights this year as she builds on a solid freshman campaign.
  3. Although Logan was quite happy with the offense, and pace of the game, one thing to watch as UND takes on South Dakota Saturday is its defense. Manitoba scored its only goal on a superb long shot towards the end of the game by utilizing gaps in UND’s defense. If the Fighting Hawks can matchup well against a Summit League squad on Saturday, even in exhibition play, it will be a sign of good things to come this season. The Fighting Hawks showed strong defense last season, if it can figure out the turf field and the offense can build on last night’s performance, good things are in store this season for UND.

Three goals and Six Points: A Recap of UND Soccer’s 2-0 Start in the Big Sky

Rain, cold weather, and constant pressure defending leads all weekend. Despite all of these things, the Fighting Hawks took all six points at home this weekend over Idaho State, and Weber State and eclipsed their conference win total of 2016.

Both games had some things in common. The Fighting Hawks generated multiple chances throughout the weekend. In addition, the forward play was markedly more consistent as more UND chances ended up on goal than a few weeks ago.

Friday’s game against Idaho State was punctuated by two Katie Moller goals. The first one came on a penalty kick after she got a quick ball through and earned a foul in the box. The second one came on a bouncing ball that went into the net after going through a lot of the six yard box. The Fighting Hawks then had to finish a second half against an Idaho State team that did not quit.

Head Coach Chris Logan noted the need for UND to play a complete game. He also credited Idaho State for changing the pace of play for the last 60 minutes of the game.

On Sunday, UND took their coach’s advice and generated more chances throughout the game against a Weber State team whose record was not at all indicative of their skill level. UND controlled the pace for multiple increments throughout the game. Katie Moller came close a few times to adding to her goal total on the weekend.

Moller would run her point total on the weekend to three midway through the second half. She expertly placed a ball for Mimi Eiden who headed the ball to the back of the net with rocket-like quickness.

From that point, Weber State came close on multiple attempts, but like on Friday, goalie Catherine Klein was equal to the task. The sophomore goalie has three clean sheets on the season.

Fighting Hawks fans are lucky to have Mimi Eiden play for them. She has personified the attack-oriented mentality Head Coach Chris Logan and his staff have worked so hard to instill in this program. Both Logan, and Associate Coach Chris Citowicki noted how strong Mimi played in practice. That manifested itself twice over this weekend. On Friday, she drew a couple of fouls against the Bengals late in the game to eat into the clock and preserve a shutout.

Today, Eiden got extra time playing with Katie Moller and used every bit of her talent and skill to give UND its best start in the Big Sky, and its first 2-0 start in conference play since 2003 in the NCC.

UND will have a tough test next weekend as they head out on the road to face Sacramento State and Northern Arizona.

Pride, Passion, Belief,and a Strong Offensive Outing Gives UND a 2-0 Win over Western Illinois University

On Sunday August 20, 2017, UND flew past the Leathernecks of Western Illinois University to stake themselves to their first ever 2-0 start in the Division one era.

The Fighting Hawks raced out to a quick 3-0 first half lead thanks to strong offensive play. Katie Moller got the scoring underway with the first of her two markers on the day. Next, Olivia Geiwitz made it 2-0 with strong play inside the box. Finally, Erin Svensson had the nicest goal of the day to make it 3-0 to close the half. The defender’s shot was a high arching shot that beat everyone and everything to squeak in the top right corner. She would contribute an assist on Moller’s second tally.

In net, Olivia Swenson picked up the win for the Fighting Hawks with an eight-save shutout. Ines Palmiero made four saves on eight shots in 73:42 of play. Goalie Jennifer Currie finished the game with a scoreless relief effort.

Coach Logan noted that UND played with a lot of pride, passion and belief. The Hawks look to take those emotions to Brookings, South Dakota , and Auburn next weekend to continue this strong string of early season play. Look for UND’s speed down the wings, strong goaltending from multiple goalies, and ability to cross to make a difference for them this weekend.