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Pioneers even record with win, tie

Shelby Le Duc

Sophmore Jessica Butler steals a pass against University of Wisconsin-River Falls Oct. 12. The Pioneers took the match to double overtime and tied the Falcons 0-0. The match was played in support of the "Never Give Up" Suicide Awareness program.

Sonne Lozan and Emily Herrick

he University of Wisconsin-Platteville women’s soccer team (6-6, 2-1 WIAC) defeated University of Wisconsin-La Crosse at the Ralph E. Davis Stadium Oct. 9, achieving a 1-0 win over the Eagles.

The Pioneers initially had trouble keeping firm possession of the ball throughout the beginning of the first half.  However, the game’s action was played primarily at the Eagles’ end of the field, as the Pioneers gradually worked the ball down before taking shots toward the goal.

Near the end of the first half, UW-Platteville received a penalty kick just outside of the Eagles’ goal box.  Sophomore center midfielder Julie Divita reluctantly took the penalty kick, lobbing it over the defensive wall, past goalie Ashley Tracy’s head and into the net during the 30th minute of the game.

“It was definitely a moment of relief.  I was really excited,” Divita said.  “We were practicing free kicks the night before.  I kind of got the hang of it and she [head coach Allison Stringer] made me take it today.  I felt confident about it.”

After Divita’s game-defining goal was scored, the Eagles pushed hard in an attempt to even-out the match.  The Pioneers received a gut-wrenching penalty near half-field, which gave the Eagles a final chance to score a goal within the remaining five seconds of the first half.  UW-Platteville’s defensive end remained stout, refusing to give up the goal.

During the beginning of the second half, the Pioneers got more aggressive and took shots on goal in seventh, 11th and 20th minutes of the half.

Head coach Allison Stringer encouraged the team to prepare for a tough game, just like any other, but especially regarding the Eagles.

“I thought it was a physical game. We knew coming into it,” Stringer said.  “I had watched some film on them and that was one thing I kept telling the girls: ‘Get ready for a battle cause it’s gonna be physical.’ They had some big girls out there and they just used their bodies right. I thought we handled the pressure well.”

UW-Platteville continued to dominate UW-La Crosse’s half of the field, although both teams played pretty evenly in the second.

“I think we played really well together.  We have a tough conference, so I expected it to be really tough. We came out here and tried our best,” freshman forward Yamilex Jaramillo said.

Junior center defensive-back Meghan Macy felt the pressure build during the match but remained confident throughout.

“The intensity from the start was great.  We came out to play and it was just a great atmosphere,” Macy said.  “The end was a little nerve-wracking.  I just told everyone to play smart.  We kept the ball and played really well.”

Stringer was happy to see the team hold their lead after their free kick, despite the Eagles’ persistent pressure.  After not playing for 10 days, the Pioneers faced a little apprehension before the game, but remained focused and attentive, Stringer said.

“I thought it was a tough battle.  It’s always hard going up 1-0 and keeping it.  They fought really hard to keep that win,” Stringer said.  “We tried to get more goals, but it just didn’t fall our way, so I’ll take a 1-0 win. I think, offensively, we could still sure up a few things, but I think we’ll take what comes our way, so let’s move on to the next one and see what we can do.”

A sea of yellow covered Ralph E. Davis Pioneer Stadium this past Saturday as the Pioneers took on University of Wisconsin-River Falls during the third annual Suicide Awareness game.

Tensions were at a high as the game entered double overtime. Even with many shots on goal, the game finished with a 0-0 draw.

“We watched film on them, so we knew what to expect and knew that it would be an evenly matched game,” junior midfielder Lindsey Harms said. Harms tallied four shots on the game.

The first half of the game was led by junior Taylor Stanley, having two shots on goal, along with freshman Yamilex Jaramillo, senior Ashley Chernich and Macy attempting one shot each. UW-River Falls went through the first half with no attempts on goal.

The Pioneers started off the second half with a corner kick from senior Sarah Eck, which led to an attempted goal by Katie Viney, which went wide. The game continued with several fouls from the Pioneers and a first attempt from UW-River Falls.

UW-Platteville returned with six more attempts on goal, but both teams still failed to score.

Harms started the first overtime with a hopeful shot on goal but was saved by UW-River Fall’s goalkeeper Rebecca Kramer. River Falls returned with two attempts but were off target. This led to the double overtime, where both teams had an attempt on goal, but the score remained 0-0.

Even though the game was a draw the overall turnout was a success. UW-Platteville’s team was especially motivated in this game, showing support for “Never Give Up” Suicidal Awareness.

“It was a fun atmosphere and really helped us play better,” Harms said. “Before our first overtime, coach asked if we wanted subs; we all said no. Everyone wanted to stay in the game, not only for the conference win but for the overall cause.”

The Pioneers hit the road for their next three matches, which will be key in the team’s attempt to make the WIAC Tournament.

UW-Platteville faces of with University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire at 1 p.m. Saturday.

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