Ranger women’s perfect season comes to a close, fall 1-0 in Sweet Sixteen

On Nov. 21 the number three ranked Ranger women’s soccer team, riding high on a perfect season, fell to eleventh ranked Grand Valley State University early in overtime, 1-0. It was a valiant effort on the end of the Ranger women, who could have given up at least six goals, but fought to keep them from the back of the net.

The game opened up unusually for the Ranger women, with the team being more on the defensive for the majority of the first half. Grand Valley St. controlled much of the tempo, but that didn’t stop the Rangers from attacking whenever possible. Neither team was superior, but the Lakers seemed to have the edge early and often. Senior Midfielder Kelsey Armour took the best shot of the game for the Rangers with twenty seven minutes left in the first, kicking the ball out of the reach of the keeper, but slightly above the post. Later in the first, Grand Valley was threatening deep in the box, keeper Mallory Geurts got slightly out of position and a Laker put a good shot on goal, but Defender of the Year, Senior Karley Mecko came up big, deflecting it out of bounds, keeping the score knotted at zero going into the half.

The second half started out much like the first, with the Lakers attacking early throughout, and the Rangers attacking on any opportunities that presented themselves. The game got very physical, with a lot of pushing and shoulder blocks for both sides (a GVSU player was carded with twenty four minutes left). GVSU got deep into the box on a few occasions, but First Team Member Goalie Mallory Geurts kept them in front of her; the game went into overtime still tied at zero.

The overtime period went back and forth for what seemed like a few moments; that was until the game ended on a header off of a corner kick by a GVSU player, propelling Grand Valley State into the Elite Eight, and leaving the Ranger Women defeated.

The Rangers were undefeated throughout the season, collecting the regular season and conference titles on route to a sweet sixteen appearance. The team landed six players on All-GLVC Teams, and three individual awards (Karley Mecko was Defensive Player of the Year, Bailey Reed was Freshman of the Year, and Troy Fabiano was Coach of the Year). The game was also the finale for four great Ranger careers, Kelsey Armour, Karley Mecko, Ashley Meyer and Emily Konior. In their four years, the Rangers made it to the NCAA tournament four straight times, appeared in two sweet sixteen games, and put up an astonishing record of 32-2-6 at Wood Road Field.

We at The Ranger News want to once again congratulate the UW-Parkside Women’s Soccer Team on a banner season, and on being not only one of the most dominant teams this year, but consistently achieving excellence year in and year out. You are our champions, ladies.

Article by Jalen Perry

UW-Parkside Women’s Soccer advances to conference championship with 2-0 victory

On Nov. 7 the Ranger women continued their journey to an undefeated season with a 2-0 shutout victory over Truman State. The game was back and forth for stretches, but overall the strength of the team, the defense, kept the ball on our side of the field for the majority of the contest. Both goals, assisted by sophomore defender Niekie Pellens, came off of corner kicks. Though the girls couldn’t seem to get calls to go their way, they toughed through it and persevered, just like we Rangers do.

The first half was dominated by the Ranger women, other than a few spurts by the Bulldogs (two shots on goal in first half); we kept the ball on our side of the pitch and controlled the tempo. There seemed to be a lot of chances late in first half to score, but the girls failed to pull the trigger on many of them. The first goal came with twenty minutes left in the first; Niekie Pellens served up a beautiful kick, and sophomore midfielder Lauren Bialas, who had literally just checked into the game, came soaring for the header goal. Wood Road Field came unglued as the fans felt the girls inching closer to the title game. The first half ended with the Rangers up 1-0.

The second half felt like an encore of the first, with the Rangers controlling the tempo and threatening early and often (finishing with five shots on goal for the day). The game started to get physical as Truman State got a lot of the calls; the girls were visibly getting flustered (two of our players picked up yellow cards), but they kept their composure and struck again. With thirty one minutes left, another corner by Niekie Pellens was headed in by senior midfielder Kelsey Armour. That was all the girls needed to capture their sixteenth victory of the season, shtting Truman St. out 2-0.

The women play in their second straight GLVC Championship game against Missouri University S&T on Sunday, Nov. 9 at noon. Location: Wood Road Field/Ranger Central. Come out and support on what should be a memorable ending to this historic conference season.

Go Rangers!

Article by Jalen Perry

Women’s Soccer wins GLVC regular season championship in tie with Lewis

On Oct. 29 the Parkside Women’s Soccer team tied in a defensively dominant match against eighth ranked Lewis University (5-5-5 in GLVC) and in the process, claimed the GLVC regular season title. This season has no doubt been one of the best in UW-Parkside Athletics history, and the women are still on the hunt for a tournament championship, one that has eluded them for four years.

The women dominated Lewis for the majority of the game, keeping the ball on their side for most of the match. They attacked early and often, finishing the game with six shots on goal to Lewis’ one; also adding on 11 corner kicks to Lewis’ three. They had many runs that looked promising, failing to pull the trigger on many. The strength of the team, their defense, was on full effect throughout the game, as Lewis rarely attacked or even had the opportunity to.

The second half started with Lewis being a little more aggressive, but not really threatening too much. Parkside was obviously the better team going into overtime, and the fans seemed confident that it was only a matter of time before the girls sent a ball flying into the back of the net.

Overtime was more of the same, with Parkside dominating, but not being able to score a goal. It finally seemed as though the girls would break through with time running out in the first overtime; the girls scored what seemed to be the winning goal, but the referee called it back, claiming the horn had already sounded. The game was called due to darkness when the second overtime started, but a tie was all the girls needed to claim the regular season crown.

With the team winning the regular season championship, all games Parkside plays in will be hosted on home soil at Road Field. The rematch between Lewis and (The GLVC Regular Season Champion) UW-Parkside will be Nov. 2 at noon.

The women finish the regular season 14-0-3, 12-0-3 in the GLVC. The 2014 GLVC Women’s Tournament Bracket is posted below.

http://www.parksiderangers.com/documents/2014/10/29//2014_WSOC_Tournament_Bracket.pdf?id=2037

Article by Jalen Perry