FARGO, N.D. – The University of Denver women’s soccer team erased a 2-0 halftime deficit with a goal from freshman Samantha Feller (Grand Junction, Colo.), a 90th minute equalizer from freshman Camryn MacMillan (Littleton, Colo.) and the winner late in the first period of extra time from junior Hannah Adler (Oak Park, Calif.) to keep the Pioneers perfect in Summit League play with a 3-2 win at North Dakota State in a rematch of the 2017 Summit League Tournament Final on Thursday night at Dacotah Field.
The two-goal comeback for the Pioneers was their first since coming from 2-0 down to defeat Maryland in the 2012 NCAA Tournament Second Round to send Denver to its first Round of 16 in program history. Former Pioneer Nicholette DiGiacomo equalized from the penalty spot with 40 seconds in regulation and won it in the 94th.
“We had most of the game in the first half, but they took advantage of their chances. Things just weren’t going our way,” head coach Jeff Hooker said. “We had to keep doing what we were doing. After changing formations to playing with one holding mid I thought we did a great job of staying disciplined in an attacking formation, and we got that first goal. We kept the pressure on, and everyone executed their role off the bench. We fought to our last opportunity and Cam was able to score off the corner to tie it. In overtime, I thought that we did a great job of staying on the front foot, and it was just some great build up play on the goal to win it. I’m really proud of this performance tonight.”
Adler added an assist on the late equalizer to lead the Pioneers (7-4-2, 3-0-0 Summit) with three points in the victory over the Bison, who also entered Thursday night a perfect 2-0-0 in Summit League play.
Feller, who was named the Summit League Offensive Player of the Week on Monday, stretched her consecutive games with a goal streak to four in her rookie season with her sixth goal in that timeframe.
Holly Enderle got North Dakota State (5-5-0, 2-1-0 Summit) on the board just shy of the half hour mark off an assist on a corner kick from Roxy Roemer. Junior Brittany Wilson (Littleton, Colo.) was able to get a hand on the corner, but the clearance fell to Enderle who knocked home her third of the season.
Enderle got her second goal of the match in the 43rd minute as a deflected Mallory Fenske cross popped straight up in the air and soared to the head of Enderle, who snuck her headed attempt inside the far post.
Denver outshot North Dakota State 8-6 in the opening 45 minutes, putting five of its eight attempts on target. The Pioneers also took four of the five corners in the first half.
Feller pulled one back for the Pioneers with her sixth goal of the season, slotting home a Meg Halvorson (Englewood, Colo.) cross from the right side to bring the score to 2-1 in the 62nd minute.
Denver equalized off its 10th corner of the match. Freshman Natalie Beckman (Denver, Colo.) played the 90th minute set piece into the center of the box. Adler got on the end of the corner, flicking it forward and MacMillan hammered home the bouncing ball into the roof of the net to level the match at 2-2. The goal was the latest equalizer or game-winner in regulation of the season (last at Fort Wayne in 2017 –Jessie Dancy with 17 seconds left).
The Pioneers got some build up play in the middle of the field to setup the winner in the 99th minute. Sophomore Brittney Lewis (Centennial, Colo.) and Beckman got Adler the ball in the center of the field and the junior struck it cleanly from just outside of 12 yards to send the Pioneers to their seventh win of the season, and their second in extra time.
Wilson finished with seven saves in the victory.