Wildcats overcome Nebraska at Omaha

Bridget Howard, freshman, looks to keep the ball away from Hali Sutter, sophomore, during the Wildcats scrimmage on August 6, 2016 at the K-State Soccer Complex. White defeated purple 2-0. (Evert Nelson | The Collegian)

The Kansas State Wildcat soccer team finished a two-game trip to Omaha, Nebraska with a 1-0 win over the University of Nebraska at Omaha Mavericks, Sunday afternoon.

The win was the second of the season for the Wildcats, bringing their record this season to 2-2-2. It was also the second win for the Wildcats in their last four games.

Sunday’s win also means the Wildcats will return from Omaha without a loss, marking the first time ever the team has completed a weekend (Friday-Sunday) without a loss.

How it happened

Freshman midfielder Dora Gallo scored the lone goal of the game in the 63rd minute. The goal made it 1-0 for the Wildcats, and was Gallo’s second of the season.

The goal came off a cross by freshman midfielder and forward Laramie Hall, who recorded an assist on the play. It was the second point of the weekend for Hall, who scored K-State’s lone goal against Creighton University Friday night. Hall’s goal Friday tied the game and allowed K-State to earn a draw after junior goalkeeper Miranda Larkin allowed her first goal of the season.

Larkin made sure Gallo’s goal was enough against Nebraska.

The Mavericks attacked early and often, getting the game’s first shot on goal in the fifth minute.

From there, the Mavericks outshot the Wildcats 8-2 in the first half, and 8-5 in the second, winning the shot battle 16-7. K-State head coach Mike Dibbini said to K-State Sports that fatigue played a part in Sunday’s game.

“My only concern today was seeing our players fight through fatigue after playing overtime on Friday night,” Dibbini said to K-State Sports. “We saw it firsthand that our legs were just not underneath us. It took us a defensive (first) half to make some adjustments at the half.”

Despite the pressure, Larkin blocked all five shots the Mavericks got on net Sunday. It was her third shutout in her four starts this season.

Though the Mavericks got more shots off against the Wildcats, the Wildcats actually got just as many on goal. Their one chance proved to be all they needed.

“It was basically what we had worked on all week with them,” Dibbini said to K-State Sports. “The one good opportunity we had they executed it well. I couldn’t be more proud of the girls for coming away from this weekend with four points.”

Looking ahead

Sunday’s game was the sixth of an eight-game season-opening road trip for the Wildcats.

Next weekend, the Wildcats head to Arkansas to play the University of Central Arkansas Bears Friday and the Little Rock Trojans on Sunday.

Shelton grew up in the desert southwest. A native of Lancaster, California, he mostly grew up in south Phoenix, Arizona; Austin, Texas; and Colorado Springs, Colorado before moving to Kansas and graduating from Junction City High School. He started working as a news writer for the Collegian in 2009 before taking a three-year break from college. He returned to K-State in 2013 and has since worked for the news desk, feature desk, as a copy editor and now as a sports writer. He enjoys tap dancing, writing anything possible, reading court opinions and watching Arizona Coyotes hockey.