MIDLAND, Mich. – The Michigan Tech soccer team suffered a 1-0 defeat against Northwood on Friday from Dean Soccer Field in Midland, Michigan. The Huskies fall to 3-3-1 overall and 0-1-0 in their first GLIAC match of the season, and the Timberwolves improve to 5-3-0 overall and 1-0-0 in conference play.
The goal came in the 89th minute off a counter attack through the middle of the field. Senior Anne Fife was beaten on a 50/50 header and Northwood's Jessica Piper bought herself some space from the defense and fired a shot over a diving Gracie VanLangevelde and into the top left corner.
Sophomore Grace Shaw received a straight red card in the 70th minute after she went in for a tackle after the Northwood player had passed the ball. With Shaw ejected from the game, the Huskies were forced to play with 10 players for the remainder of the half.
In the 72nd minute, the Timberwolves were awarded a penalty after junior Kassity Swanson was called for a handball inside the box. Juliana Paoletti, Northwood's leading scorer, stepped up to take the shot for the go-ahead goal but she was denied by VanLangevelde, as the freshman dove low and to her left to meet the shot.
Tech had two consecutive opportunities to take the lead in the 61st minute when sophomore Alicia Shatrau unleashed a dipping shot from 30 yards out that the Northwood goalkeeper spilled inside the box. Sophomore Gabby Sgambati managed to direct the ball towards the right wing for a charging Stephanie Yeager, but the sophomore's shot was parried away.
The Huskies were unable to generate many opportunities in the first half, as they were limited to two shots total. Shaw had a shot blocked in the 21st minute, and Yeager had a shot from distance off a free kick sail high of the net minutes later.
Michigan Tech finished the day with eight shots to Northwood's ten. Tech earned more corner kicks (3-2), but were called for 16 fouls to just four for Northwood. Sgambati was also called for a yellow card in the second half, while Kassidy Embrey of Northwood received a yellow card in the first half. VanLangevelde put in a four save performance that was highlighted by her penalty save late in the second half and her distribution with the ball.
"It was a tough game in a tough environment today. Gracie did an amazing job in goal for us," said head coach Michelle Jacob. "Our possession wasn't the best in the first half, but the team made improvements we asked of them at halftime, and that gave us much better opportunities."
Paoletti was held scoreless on the day but was credited with the assist on the game-winning goal. Northwood goalkeeper Andrea Everett made three saves in her team's win.
The Huskies will head to Big Rapids for Sunday's contest against Ferris State. The Bulldogs (7-1-1) enter that game following a 5-0 victory over Northern Michigan. The opening kick is scheduled for noon.