LARAMIE, Wyo. -- The Northern Colorado (3-3-1) soccer team started out its three-match week with a close 1-0 win at Wyoming (3-4-1) on Wednesday. The Cowgirls hosted the Bears in the "Front Range Derby" at the Madrid Sports Complex.
"This game and against New Mexico [State University], those games are similar and I thought we were a little bit better today," head coach Tim Barrera said.
The freshmen duo of Shanlie Anderson and Katherine Day helped bring an edge to make sure this match didn't end up like the New Mexico State match, a 0-0 tie. The two connected for a second time this season, to help push the Bears to the victory and the recapture of the Front Range Derby Trophy. Senior Natalie D'Adamio also helped preserve the shutout, her fourth of the season, to make her starting record 3-3-1.
"We used a lot of players and got a lot of team effort," Barrera said. "With the altitude, we knew were going to have to go deep into the bench and we did and it helped. Midweek games are tough, too, with players going to class and not as much intensity as a Friday match. But we were happy with how the players came out."
Both teams began the day by trading shots through the first half. The Bears' Mallory Van Hout took the first shot of the match in the second minute. Van Hout's shot, though, was saved by the Cowgirls keeper, Alex Boehm. UNC put up three more shots during the first half, including two on goal. The Cowgirls answered every shot with one of its own. Wyoming was unable to answer UNC's lone goal, though, which was scored in the 41st minute.
Anderson and Day both came into the game in the 32nd minute. It would take them less than 10 minutes to change the score of the game. Coming off a Wyoming foul, Essence Ortiz-Laneir was able to take the ball up the field before Day became in control of the ball. Day then crossed it from the left side towards Anderson who was about 15 yards out from the goal. Anderson made her way to the ball and put the one-timer in to put the Bears on top going into halftime.
"We look to get (young) players in as they're growing," Barrera said. "It's nice to see those players step up and find that opening. Both teams have players dinged up so we need to go deep into the bench and it's nice to see the maturation (from the young players)."
Wyoming took control of the ball following the Bears' goal and put up six shots compared to the Bears' one. The shots kept D'Adamio busy as she saved four of the six. The latter half of the second period was controlled by the Bears, though. Four different Bears put up shots in the last 20 minutes compared to the Cowgirls' one.
The last chance Wyoming would see to score the game-tying goal came in the 73rd minute. After the shot went wide, the Bears held off the Cowgirls to finish the 1-0 shutout win. The shutout was D'Adamio's fourth overall and third in a row.
"She did a nice job," said Barrera. "She's an experienced goalkeeper and is steady back there. There was one opportunity for them when they came around the back, but she did a good job making the save."
Both teams totalled 10 shots on the day with six on goal. One shot made the difference, though, as D'Adamio saved six shots compared to Boehm with five. Wyoming won the corner kick battle with three to the Bears' two. Wyoming was also offsides twice while UNC didn't total any.
UNC has now won three matches all-time against Wyoming, all coming in the past six matches.
The Bears continue action this week while traveling to the Omni Hotels Colorado Women's Soccer Classic to take on UNLV and Stony Brook this weekend.