Women’s soccer team beginning to find its groove
DUBUQUE — It was a full week of practice before the Duhawks were back on the pitch for their next Iowa Conference match.
After an easy 6-0 win over the Buena Vista Beavers, the Duhawks used the week of practice to get ready for their fourth IIAC match of the season against Simpson Storm. The Duhawks dominated from the initial whistle, putting pressure on the Storm’s attacking third from the start.
Early in the first half, junior Katie Truesdale netted the first goal of the game after an errant goal kick from the Storm that went right to the foot of Truesdale.
In the 18th minute, junior Ailish Rispin tallied her first goal of the season, putting one away from inside the 18, giving the Duhawks a 2-0 advantage.
The Duhawks continued to hammer the Storm with their attack, firing off 12 shots in the first half. In the 33rd minute of the game, senior Claire Murphy dribbled around the Storm’s back line, laying it off to sophomore Hannah Burgmeier who put her third of the season in the back of the net.
With a three-goal advantage at the end of the first half, the Duhawks kept the Storm from getting any shots on goal. Four minutes into the second half, senior Alexa Eggert drew a free kick just outside of the Simpson 18. After a touch from Eggert, Truesdale netted the free-kick, her second of the game.
In the 59th minute of the game, Truesdale hit a shot which was fortunate enough to hit off one of Simpson’s defenders and go into the goal, resulting in an own goal. Simpson was not able to get on the board and Loras took the game, 5-0.
The final shot advantage for the Duhawks was 19-1. With the win over the Storm, the Duhawks improve to 8-6-0 overall and 3-1-0 in IIAC play.
The Duhawks only conference loss of the season came against University of Dubuque, who had their first IIAC loss this past weekend against Central College. The Spartans’ loss gives each IIAC team a loss this season.
The Duhawks are scheduled to play Luther College this upcoming weekend in Decorah, IA. The Duhawks defeated the Norse 3-0 a season ago.
“I think these past two conference games have put us in the driver’s seat to control our standings in the conference,” said Rispin. “As a team, we are finally getting it together, peaking at the right time and getting that groove on the field we have been lacking. It is exciting to see how the conference is panning out because everything has been up and down this season.”
The Duhawks control their own destiny, at least partly. If the Duhawks win out, they are guaranteed to finish second in the conference. In order to finish first, the Duhawks will need the University of Dubuque to suffer a second conference loss.
“Overall, we still have things to improve on but these full weeks of practice have really helped,” said Rispin. “In looking at the next three conference games, we are feeling confident and knowing that we have what it takes to win the conference.”