COLUMBUS, Ohio Ohio State fought back twice from two goal deficits but UW-Milwaukee converted a penalty kick in the 88th minute to record a 4-3 victory over the Buckeyes Wednesday in Milwaukee, Wisc. The game was Ohio State’s season opener. Milwaukee improves to 2-0 after its second win over a Big Ten team this year.
Trailing 2-0 early in the second half, Ohio State sophomore forward Genna Brand scored Ohio State’s initial goal of the season with senior Caitlin Colfer assisting on the play. Milwaukee came right back to extend the lead to 3-1 as Sarah Hagen scored her third goal of the season with an assist from Erin Kreuser.
Ohio State kept battling, though. Freshman Paige Maxwell scored her first goal as a Buckeye in the 63rd minute to cut the deficit to 3-2. Senior Lisa Collison and freshman Caitlyn Martin assisted on the play.
Ohio State kept the pressure on. Martin and Brand followed with shots in the 71st and 77th minutes, respectively, but both sailed wide. Collison and Maxwell each had shots blocked in the 83rd and 84th minutes, respectively.
Then just moments after Milwaukee’s Hagan was called for a yellow card for rough play, junior forward Ashley Bowyer tied the score on a 25-yard free kick in the 88th minute to complete the comeback.
Just 18 seconds later, though, Ohio State was called for a foul in the box and Milwaukee’s Nicole Sperl scored on a penalty kick to give the home team the win in front of 500 fans on a 76-degree night.
“This was an amazing game,” Lori Walker, 12thyear Ohio State head coach said. “To come back from two goals down on the road twice was really a credit to the players. Unfortunately, we left ourselves exposed a bit but I’m confident we will grow from this game.”
An aggressive and fired up UW-Milwaukee team, seeking a second win in a week over a Big Ten team after opening with a 3-0 win over Wisconsin, sent seven shots toward the Ohio State net in the game’s first 16 minutes. Fortunately, the confident and competent Lauren Robertson was in goal for the Buckeyes and she proceeded to make saves on all four shots on goal and on a total of six in the first half alone.
After 10 shots, including five on goal, the Panthers broke through in the 39th minute to take a 1-0 lead. Laurel Ragalie scored off an assist from Keara Thompson.
The first half ended at 1-0 in favor of the home team. The Buckeyes had just two shots in the half. Both teams had five fouls and the Panthers led in corners, 3-2. The second half would be a completely different game, as the score would indicate.
The opponent was no cupcake that Walker pitted her team against to open the season (and neither is Marquette, Ohio State’s Friday opponent). UW-Milwaukee has won the Horizon League championship eight consecutive years and has gone 48-1-3 in league play during that time. The Panthers entered the game with a 26-game home unbeaten streak (21-0-5) dating back to the 2004 season.
Game Notes and Other Notes of Interest:
- The two teams have combined for nine NCAA tournament appearances. Ohio State has gone to the NCAA tournament in 2002-03-04-07. UW-Milwaukee went in 1997 and 2001-02-05-06.
- Starters for Ohio State included one senior, two juniors, six sophomores and two freshmen (GK Jr. Lauren Robertson; D Fr. Elizabeth Sullivan, So. Lauren Beachy, So. Cassie Dickerson and So. Lauren Steuer; M Jr. Ashley Bowyer, So. Emily Esbrook and Fr. Caitlyn Martin; F So. Ali Schwach, Sr. Caitlin Colfer and So. Genna Brand).
- UW-Milwaukee had 15 shots and 10 on goal. Ohio State countered with nine shots and three on goal.
- The Buckeyes had 12 fouls compared to six for the Panthers.
- Lisa Collison’s assist was her 65th career point. She ranks sixth at Ohio State in career points.
- Caitlin Colfer recorded her 10th career assist to move into a tie for 14th-place all-time at Ohio State.
- The four goals allowed in an Ohio State opener tied for the most in 16 years of Ohio State soccer. Oakland scored four goals in a shutout win over Ohio State in 2000.
- The seven total goals tied for the highest scoring Ohio State opener. Ohio State defeated Wright State, 5-2, in its 2001 opener.
- A total of 19 Buckeyes played in the game including seven true freshmen.
- Ohio State plays at Marquette at 3 p.m. Friday. Live stats are available at