This past weekend, the Minnesota State Maverick soccer team began play in the 2018 NSIC playoffs. On Friday, the Mavs defeated the Augustana Vikings in the first round, and then followed it up with another victory on Sunday against the Minot State Beavers to win the NSIC Tournament.
In the first game on the weekend against the Vikings, the girls put the pedal to the medal and scored three goals to beat Augustana 3-0.
The defense never let up in the game and even the goalkeeper, junior Alexa Rabune, had a nice day saving 11 shots on goal on the day for the Mavericks.
Freshman Jenny Vetter was the only Maverick to score in the first half and was assisted by Morgan Cottew.
On the defensive side of the ball, Rabune was busy swatting the ball away all throughout the first part of the game, as she had eight saves in the first half.
The second half was a different story, as senior forward Julia Zach came out aggressive and scored an unassisted goal in the 54thminute.
Freshman forward Brynn Desens put the icing on the cake for the Mavs with the third goal in the 77thminute making any chance of the Vikings coming back almost impossible.
From the bench, you could see the agony in Augustana’s coach’s face and knew that his hopes of advancing to the second round were over.
As the clock hit zero, the Mavericks ran onto the field in hysteria and euphoria. After 34 shots and a close call thanks to Augustana making an excellent save, the Mavericks awaited their next opponent.
That would end up being the Minot State Beavers, who gave the Mavericks a challenge on Sunday.
It was a back and forth matchup and the fans were patient for the first goal.
Finally, junior Dakota Wendell found the back of the net after a deflection from the goalie and gave the Mavs a 1-0 lead.
This ended up being all what the Mavericks needed, as the team held up lead, and won the game, 1-0, to clinch their third consecutive NSIC title.
The team now find themselves in the NCAA Tournament.
This appearance makes it the soccer team’s eighth straight time to have made the NCAA Tournament. In addition to this fact, the Mavericks have yet to lose on their home turf this season and are on a 33-game winning streak.
After both games were said and done, head coach Brian Bahl was asked in a press conference afterwards how he felt about another NSIC championship. Bahl said, “This one might be just a little sweeter… to bounce back and get this one done was really special because I wanted our team to have the opportunity to raise the trophy here. I’m just really proud of them.”
Morgan Cottew, named the MVP of the conference tournament, explained how much preparation the team went through for these two games. “Coming into this weekend we knew we had to work super hard. We knew with postseason everybody was going to come fighting for their lives… and we pulled through.”
Minot State came out kicking and gave everything they had but thanks to Dakota Wendell, the Mavs are in the NCAA Tournament.
The Maverick soccer team is scheduled for another game on Nov. 9 with their opponent to be decided. If you haven’t watched or supported the soccer team yet, this would be the time to do so, as our girls have a shot to go deep into the NCAA Tournament.
Feature photo by Gage Cureton | MSU Reporter.