University of Minnesota Golden Gophers line-up before the Minnesota Gold Soccer classic at at Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium.

Gophers fall short in conference soccer opener


University of Minnesota senior captain MacKenzie Misel running past teammates at Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium.

University of Minnesota senior captain MacKenzie Misel running past teammates at Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium.

Minnesota still seeks their first conference win after falling short in their Big Ten opener 1-0, Saturday against Indiana. This marks the second defeat of the still young season for the visiting Gophers, who previously lost to eighth ranked Florida in Gainesville.

With eight fewer shots on goal, Minnesota opened the door for the more aggressive Hoosiers to capture a conference win. “We have a lot of Big Ten season left and I have great confidence in my team that we will learn from this and get better moving forward” said second year coach Stefanie Golan.

The only score came courtesy of the Hoosiers’ Veronica Ellis at the 24:49 mark of the second period. Ellis’ goal escaped the reach of first year Gopher goalkeeper Tarah Hobbs who had nine saves in the match bringing her season total to 27 — tied for fifth in the Big Ten. It took Ellis, a freshman, just 13 minutes of play to score her first career goal for Indiana.

While the Hoosiers proved too much for the Maroon and Gold, the team looks to earn at least a share of the conference title for the first time since 2008 — Minnesota has finished higher than Indiana each of the last five seasons. Further, with just three seniors on the roster, the Gophers showed promise amongst their youth and hope to get back on track Friday in East Lansing against Michigan State.

Minnesota does not return home to Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium in St. Paul until Oct. 4, when they will take on (The) Ohio State University Buckeyes. Currently the Gophers are 7-2-0 on the season.

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