Women’s Soccer Bounces Back After Rocky Start

Oredigger Women’s Soccer currently stands at six wins, two ties and two losses as of October 4. During conferences, they have won three out of four and tied the other two games played.

Friday, Sept. 25 the team took the field against rival Regis University. Going into half-time the Orediggers trailed behind 0-2. Early in the second half, Brooke Stoermer scored, turning the tide of the game with an assist from Caitlin Kaltenbaugh. Soon to follow, Acacia Ortiz scored to tie the game. The two teams continued to battle into overtime until Kaltenbaugh finished a loose ball opportunity created by Stoermer in front of the Regis goal.

Stoermer stated after the game, that “getting the first goal spurred [the team] into working harder, after the first goal [they] had huge momentum to the second and going into overtime still had that momentum.” There is concern, however, towards the ill-played first half, “we need to start the games ready to go, rather than having to wait for them to score on us to start playing.” Stoermer, however, remains positive when looking towards the future, stating that, “[they’re] on a super high and need to fix the start of the game, but we are confident.”

After the game, Coach Fickes remarked about the difference in play between the two halves. “The first half we were miserable, [but] in the second half we turned it around and we were the Orediggers again.”

The Lady Orediggers are missing Anna Deleray and Cari Smith from injuries. As Fickes explained, “that’s two big losses, Jayln Yates is struggling to get back and find her all-American form from last year.” Despite the injuries, Mel Westhoff stated at practice, “I definitely think we are growing as a unit.” Importantly “everyone is part of the team, not just the eleven people that start.” This creates a “very deep lineup” that allows the team to run hard the entire game.

One of the biggest challenges the team faces is solving issues before they become problems in the game. Acacia Ortiz explained that “when it comes to issues that need to get fixed, they get fixed in a couple games or a couple practices.” She went on to say that “it’s all about the little things” in the future games.

Coach Fickes, discussed the presence of the “Mines Mentality” within his team. He referred to the team’s hard work both on and off the field. On the field, Rachael Turner tried to capture the team’s mentality, “I play for the people next to me on the field, and I push myself to get better because that’s what everyone else expects.” This has resulted in continuous improvement by the team. “Every practice we are getting better and better and improving more and more.”

Due to a relatively slow pace going into the heart of the season, “we have to win everything we can” concluded Fickes. He is optimistic, however, because, “we have a team that is feeling it.”

Friday Oct. 3, the Orediggers played CSU Pueblo in a conference game. Rachael Turner scored a hard fought team goal in the middle of the second half to tie the game at 1-1. Turner remarked after the game, that she thought “it [would] help [the team] play well on Sunday, since everyone is mad about tying today.”

Sunday Oct. 4, the Orediggers won a conference game against New Mexico Highlands.

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