NEW ULM - The New Ulm girls soccer team got off to a fast start Monday against South Central Conference rival Waseca.
The Eagles just missed on an early scoring opportunity when Monica Illikman's shot hit the cross-bar less than a minute into the game. About two minutes later, New Ulm's Martha Balge gave the Eagles a 1-0 lead when she powered a shot past Waseca goalkeeper Bailey Wolff.
However, the Bluejays managed to tie the game later in the first half. Neither team was able to score the rest of the way and it ended in a 1-1 tie at the Martin Luther College Soccer Complex.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
New Ulm’s Monica Illikman (18) gets past a pair of Waseca defenders for a scoring chance during the second half Monday at Martin Luther College in New Ulm.
It was a fast start but a dissapointing ending for the Eagles. The wind, which was gusting hard at times, didn't make it any easier for the teams to get much going on offense.
"It definitely hurt playing in that wind," head coach Jonathan Johnson said. "We didn't play our best game, not by a long shot. I'm not in their shoes, but I know they can do better than what they did."
Both teams had several chances to break the tie in the second half but missed out on the opportunities. The Eagles and Bluejays both had 11 shots on goal and New Ulm's Shelby Smith made 10 saves in the contest.
The Eagles (5-1-1) have a re-match with the Bluejays this week when New Ulm travels to Waseca. It'll be an opportunity for New Ulm to pick up a win that they could've earned on Monday.
"We need to have the girls step up," Johnson said. "We didn't play our style of soccer. Thefirst 15 or 20 minutes of the game, our passes were hitting their mark. Then it was like somebody turned the switch."