Aug 30, 2013
EAST LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan State women’s soccer team tied No. 21 San Diego State, 1-1 on Friday evening at DeMartin Stadium. With a collective effort from the Spartans, MSU outshot the Aztecs 19-7. Michigan State is now 2-0-1 on the season, while San Diego State holds a 1-1-1 record.
“I was really pleased, especially with how they came together,” said head coach Tom Saxton. “It was so humid in the first half and both teams were sluggish. It looked like we were running in quick sand, but we tried talking to them about encouraging each other and fighting through it. We really had to come together and have strong team spirit and I think that is what carried us through. We had tons of chances. We left a couple out there and we could’ve done better with our chances. We got better and better as the game went on. The backline was all good. But you have to credit the midfield, because they ran about 10 miles. That’s why they were on at the end, because they were doing the work.”
The Spartans defended San Diego State well in the first half, limiting them to only two shots to MSU’s seven.
San Diego State got on the board first with a goal from Haley Locker in the 24th-minute with a shot from just inside the box on the right side.
Before the half was over, the Spartans ended the scoring for the afternoon, as redshirt sophomore Kirsten Evans kicked past a group of SDSU defenders, on an assist from Mary Kathryn Fiebernitz and Nicole Caruso in the 44th-minute. It was Evans’ first goal as a Spartan.
The Spartans had another close opportunity as both Marisa Oleksiak and Jessica White each got shots on goal midway through the second half.
With a battle into double overtime, the Spartans created several opportunities but could not get past the Aztecs’ defense.
“We had a game plan and they played it to a tee,” Saxton said. “San Diego State didn’t break us down too much. They got us a couple of times on long counter attacks; that’s how they scored their goal. Normally a team like SDSU will pass teams to death, and we just kind of played them soft. We let them play back and forth, but they didn’t come through us at all. I thought we did an outstanding job with that. San Diego State is a very good team. I hope this helps them gain confidence, because we played a top-25 team and hung with them and probably had our chances to win it.”
Keeper Courtney Clem started her third game of the season and had four saves in goal.
Michigan State will be back in action as the team travels on their first road matchup with Dayton on Sunday, Sept. 1 at 1 p.m.