UWO soccer defeated by Concordia University

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UWO soccer defeated by Concordia University

UW Oshkosh freshman midfielder Maddie Hill shields defender Allison McElwee of Concordia University.

UW Oshkosh freshman midfielder Maddie Hill shields defender Allison McElwee of Concordia University.

Evan Moris

UW Oshkosh freshman midfielder Maddie Hill shields defender Allison McElwee of Concordia University.

Evan Moris

Evan Moris

UW Oshkosh freshman midfielder Maddie Hill shields defender Allison McElwee of Concordia University.

Evan Moris, Assistant Sports Editor

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The UW Oshkosh women’s soccer team took to the field Sunday to face Concordia University Wisconsin.
Despite dominating the game in possession, shots and shots on goal, the Titans fell short against the Falcons 2-0, extending their losing streak to four games.

In the first 30 seconds of the game, Titans defender Tory Schumann got off a quick strike toward the goal that was saved by the Falcons goalkeeper Kaeley Sterkel.

The Titans were able to create five more shot opportunities in the first half, all of which were saved or missed the goal.

At the 24:31 mark in the first half, Falcons forward Alexandra Tomich launched a deep shot from 35 yards out that just cleared the outstretched arms of Titans goalie Madelyn Runyan, putting the visiting Falcons up 1-0.

Oshkosh was able to keep to the ball in the Falcons’ half for the majority of the first period of play, creating three corner kicks to the Falcons’ one attempt.

Switching sides in the second half, the Titans were looking to even the score. Within the first 11 minutes of the second period, UWO created four shots and two corner kicks coming out of the half.

The Falcons earned a corner kick at 59:42 into the game. Julia Smessaert sent a ball into the UWO goal box, finding Ashley Johnson, who finished the ball into the Titans’ net, making the visitors up 2-0.

At the 62:07, Maddie Hill sent a ball hurling toward the Falcons’ left post that appeared to be a sure goal until Sterkel dove her outstretched arms to deflect the ball to a corner kick for the Titans.

Oshkosh kept the ball in Concordia’s half for the majority of the second half. The Titans created 14 shots in the second half but were unable to capitalize on each opportunity.

The Titans finished with 20 shots total with 10 on goal to the Falcons’ nine with four on frame. Sterkel controlled the game in net as she finished the game with 10 saves against the Titans.

UWO head coach Erin Coppernoll said she saw bright sides in the loss Saturday that will hopefully lead to success in the games to come.
“Our offense was able to get behind their back line a lot, which is great,” Coppernoll said. “I do think that will lead to big wins in the future.”
Coppernoll said her team was in control Sunday, but it needs to capitalize on the chances it creates.

“The final pass wasn’t right,” Coppernoll said. “The final decision was a bit off, and that can be soccer sometimes.”

Titans forward Mallory Knight said she sees potential in this team due to the talent on the field and the chemistry that has been built.

“When we have the chemistry off the field and on the field, that’s when we play our best,” Knight said. “We all get along really well. It’s like a family. I adore my team.”

Knight leads the Titans in scoring this year with seven points. Knight notes her success comes from her experience entering her second season.
“It’s been a world of difference coming into my sophomore year,” Knight said. “I have so much more confidence [this year], which has allowed me to get the goals and make the runs.”

UWO forward Delaney Karl said the team becomes stronger every game even in a losing effort.

“Every loss in a match is a learning opportunity,” Karl said. “Despite how upsetting it is to lose games, we can learn from our mistakes and grow from them as individuals, players and as a team.”

UW Oshkosh freshman forward Kylee Brown protects the ball from Concordia defenders at J. J. Keller Field at Titan Stadium last Sunday. The Titan lost 2-0.

UW Oshkosh freshman forward Kylee Brown protects the ball from Concordia defenders at J. J. Keller Field at Titan Stadium last Sunday. The Titan lost 2-0.

Coppernoll said she believes the adversity faced early in the season against tough opponents helps them as they head into conference play this upcoming weekend.

“Our tough non conference schedule prepares us for conference play,” Coppernoll said. “We have seen good teams and are ready for them. We need to find 90 minutes within ourselves come Saturday.”

Karl said the team needs to improve on a few things as they head into Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play.

“We need to utilize the chances we have to put balls in the back of the net,” Karl said. “Staying positive as a team even when we do get down during a game will be key; we need to stay mentally positive and keep each other up.”

UWO will host UW-La Crosse to begin conference play Saturday, Sept. 29.