COLUMBUS, Ohio A quality Minnesota team came into the game leading the Big Ten Conference in wins, shutouts and yellow cards and it added to all three totals by winning a physical game against Ohio State, 2-0, Sunday at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
The win improved No. 23 Minnesota’s records to 15-2-0 overall and 5-2-0 in the Big Ten. Ohio State drops to 7-7-2 overall, 4-3-0 in the Big Ten and 6-3-2 in games at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
“Today our young team saw what it is like to play a really aggressive game in the Big Ten Conference,” Ohio State coach Lori Walker said. “Part of our plan was to not get out-muscled by Minnesota. This is one of the best Minnesota team’s I’ve seen, but I felt that we did a very good job of challenging them. I’m proud of our effort.”
Minnesota led, 1-0, in a hotly contested first half with 16 fouls called (nine for Minnesota; seven on Ohio State) with one Golden Gopher getting a yellow card for rough play. Two of the Ohio State fouls, though, resulted in dangerous Minnesota free kicks from just outside the box. Kaitlin Wagner took both of those kicks and scored on her second, off a shot that caromed in off the left goal post.
In the second half the physical play continued. Ohio State was whistled for nine fouls to the Golden Gophers' three, but the visitors were called for two more yellow cards and a red card. They weren’t hurt by the calls, though, even when they went a player down after a red card was issued in the box in the 77th minute off an Ohio State corner kick. The Buckeyes, trailing 2-0 at the time, were awarded a penalty kick but fifth-year senior Lindsey Dare guessed right by diving to her left to make a save off Ashley Bowyer’s penalty kick try.
Moments before that play Paige Maxwell sent a crossing ball into the box but there was no one there to convert on the try. Ohio State had one final opportunity to score with about four minutes to play. Bowyer sent a free kick from about 20 yards off the left post and the Gophers would hold on for the win.
Dare extended her school record to 13 shutouts this season by making two saves and facing 13 Ohio State shots. The Golden Gophers sent 12 shots toward Ohio State keeper Katie Baumgardner with four on goal.
The second Minnesota goal came in the 66th minute as Lindsey Schwartz sent a corner kick into the box that Krystle Kallman headed to Molly Rouse for the score from in close.
Ohio State committed 16 fouls during the game compared to 12 for Minnesota.
“I thought our team showed a tremendous amount of heart today,” Walker said. “There is a lot to be said about what we can do the rest of the season when you battle good teams with this much heart.”
The Buckeyes will now fight for better tournament positioning in the Big Ten Conference standings with three consecutive games on the road to close the regular season. Ohio State plays at Purdue Oct. 24, at Illinois Oct. 26 and at Penn State Oct. 31.
Game Notes and Other Notes of Interest:
- Seniors Caitlin Colfer, Lisa Collison and Amy Graeff were honored prior to the game, their last at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The trio helped the Buckeyes to 36 wins over their careers and to the 2007 Big Ten tournament title game and the 2007 NCAA tournament.
- Ohio State has missed 27 games this season due to various ailments to starters Cassie Dickerson, Emily Essbrook and Lauren Robertson and key reserve Caitlyn Martin.
Walker Adds 13 for 2017 Season