Both teams walked off the field Saturday with bowed heads in disappointment, both in the result and the weather.
The Dixie State University women’s soccer team couldn’t provide a powerful enough attack to find the back of the net as the Red Storm played to a disappointing 0-0 draw with Montana State University-Billings. A lengthy weather delay due to lightning caused the game to end just minutes into the first overtime.
In a game that was characterized by sloppy play in the midfield and big defensive plays, shots on goal were hard to come by, especially in the first half.
Junior forward Jennifer Mason provided the most threatening moment of the first half. using some creative footwork to create a long shot on goal just moments into the game.
Dixie controlled the game early, causing a lot of frustration for the Yellowjacket defense. Possession evened out midway through the half when MSUB was able to string together some passes.
“We started the game strong and then struggled in the second [part] of the first half,” said DSU head coach Kacey Bingham.
In the second half, both teams had chances at goal. Less than four minutes into the half, DSU had a great opportunity off a free kick, but the ball couldn’t find its way under the crossbar on a shot by junior defender Mindi Beckstrom.
The Red Storm had a scare turned into an opportunity in the 60th minute when sophomore goalkeeper Stacie Gubler made a great save, which led to a counter attack that ended with an attempt at goal by junior midfielder Kaisa Goodman.
It looked as if Dixie was about to break the scoreless drought in the 70th minute when junior midfielder Ashley Wade headed the ball and it was cleared off the goal line by the MSUB defense. Minutes later, Mason let loose a 30-yard shot that didn’t curl enough to find the back of the net.
The two defenses and Mother Nature took over the rest of the night as lightning was spotted near the stadium less than three minutes into the first overtime. NCAA rules state there must be a minimum of 30 minutes after a lightning strike before the game can be resumed. The lightning continued to strike, and the game was ended.
After the game, Bingham praised the team’s second half performance and expressed her disappointment with the result.
“I was really happy with our second half performance,” she said. “We [increased] our shots…but ultimately, it wasn’t strong enough.”
Bingham was positive about the defensive play and the solid goal keeping of Gubler, who ended the game with four saves.
“Overall, our back line did good,” Bingham said. “Abby Jameson, our right back, [played] well today.”
Jameson, a sophomore English major from Tyler, Texas, couldn’t hide her disappointment that the weather ended the game early.
“It’s a real bummer,” she said. “I feel like we should have beaten this team from the beginning.”
Bingham was unsure about what would have happened if the game would have continued.
“You never know,” she said. “Any obstacle that comes our way will be a new challenge for us.”
Bingham was optimistic about the team’s improvement going forward. She said exposure to different teams and formations will help the Red Storm this season.
The Red Storm start a long road trip Thursday as they travel to Washington to play Seattle Pacific University and Western Washington University before starting PacWest Conference play the following week at Fresno Pacific University. DSU plays Seattle Pacific Thursday at 8 p.m.