Soccer’s Final Conference Matchup Ends in a Loss, 1-0

Teresa Anderson, Sports Editor

For the last game of the regular Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) season, Winona State University’s Women’s soccer team sustained the final blow to their overall record, now sitting at 4-12-1, after an unfortunate loss against Upper Iowa State University in Fayette, IA Friday, Nov. 5, 1-0.

Leading the Warriors, Riley Harmon, fourth-year forward and midfielder, shot twice and once on goal, followed by Ella Roberts, fourth-year midfielder and defender, who shot once, Missy Greco, fifth-year midfielder and defender, who shot once, and Madyson Dye, second-year forward, who shot once and once on goal.

The Peacocks unfortunately landed the only goal of the game in the 50th minute, pressuring the Warriors in the season finale, but alas, nothing came to fruition for Winona State. This marked the fourth game straight for the Warriors to lose with the opponent scoring only one goal.

Closing out the season, the Warriors overall had 20 goals, 226 shots, 130 shots on goal and an average of 1.18 goals per game. The team had 78 corner kicks, above the average amount for their opponents at 73. Between Yanel Ortiz, fourth-year goalkeeper, and Alyson Jumper, first-year goalkeeper, 88 saves deterred their opponent from scoring over the course of the season. Fortunately, no red cards were given out to any player in the NSIC for women’s soccer.

The improvement of the team may not have been proven on the scoreboard but individually, Greco personally improved on her leadership, guiding the team for her last season as a Warrior.

“I’ve learned it’s important to be able to connect with everyone on the team and make the tough decisions that no one wants to make for the betterment of the team,” Greco said. “It’s easy to say that you want to score a goal, but are you willing to throw everything and anything behind the ball to get it in the back of the net?”

Greco in 2018 was named in the NSIC All-Academic Team and Third Team, reprising the All-Academic award the following year. The third-highest scorer on the team, Greco’s season highlights for 2021 include two goals, two assists, 42 shots and 22 shots on goal.

For Harmon, her growth this season was born from brute strength and endurance. Consistency on her craft showed as she’s named the top scorer for the Warriors.

“Over the season, I have stayed after practices or done extra work on off days, working on my shooting around the goal,” Harmon said. “I personally think I have im- proved on my pass distribution to my teammates, and I’ve been able to hold the ball better and keep it for my team.”

Although the year finished in a loss, Greco examined her team’s tendency to settle.

“I think our biggest mistake is settling for less than our best,” Greco said. “I think our team does a very good job at trying to encourage each other and be positive, but it’s to a point that we can some- times let our standard slip a little.”

Harmon predicted a win for their last game of the season, if anything to end on a high note, but regardless of the score, the team was able to collect life-long memories this year.

“Out of all the games we have played this season my favorite memory was battling in our game against Bemidji,” Harmon said. “Bemidji is a top team, and we played a great game and scored first. The game ended in a tie, but I think it showed what we are really capable of as a team.”

In agreement with Harmon, Greco added, “I don’t think it would be possible to pick a single memory. I came into this season consistently reminding myself to enjoy every single moment knowing that it is my last season, and I can definitely say that I do that.”

This game concludes the Winona State’s soccer season, with the Warriors ending at 4-12-1 overall.