Senior Erin Craig scored in the 65th minute and senior Kristen Hoon collected her fifth career shutout to lead the Montana soccer team to a 1-0 victory over Boise State Friday evening at BSU’s Boas Soccer Complex.
The win snapped the Grizzlies’ three-match losing streak, and Craig’s goal ended the team’s 368-minute scoreless drought.
“Like I said earlier this week, we’ve been creating opportunities, and we created a bunch more tonight, so to get one after all that hard work felt good. The team was excited,” UM coach Mark Plakorus said.
The final score was not indicative of the play on the field, but the other statistics were. Montana (2-3-0) outshot Boise State (2-3-0) nearly two to one and put nine shots on goal to the Broncos’ one.
The shutout was Montana’s second on the road through five matches this season, equaling the two shutouts the Grizzlies had all of last season. Both of those came at home.
“This was our most complete match of the season, from end line to end line,” Plakorus said. “I thought we played really well.
“I was pleased with our effort, our composure and the chances we created. I was happy for the girls that they ended up with a result.”
The teams combined to put just one shot on goal in the first half, senior Lauren McCreath’s header in the 10th minute that was saved by BSU’s Maddy McDevitt.
The Grizzlies upped the pressure in the second half, putting eight of their 13 shots on goal. They finally broke through in the 65th minute.
Junior Mary Makris played a ball that got behind Boise State’s back line and connected with Craig. The senior’s left-footed strike from the left side of the 18-yard box scored inside the far post.
The goal was Craig’s second of the season and 15th of her career and moves her into 10th on the Montana career scoring list. The assist was the second of Makris’s career.
Hoon’s stop of Ebie Harris’s shot in the 50th minute was the only save she needed for the shutout. Boise State would take seven corner kicks in the match to Montana’s five, but those corners produced zero shots on goal for the Broncos.
“There were some tense moments on their corner kicks and on some of their counterattacks, but for the most part our defense was fantastic, and Kristen was very good in goal,” Plakorus said.
“To limit a team as good as Boise State to a single shot on goal means you did something pretty special.”
Craig took a season-high five shots, putting three on goal. McCreath took four shots, and five other players took two shots each.
Montana will face Idaho (2-3-0) Sunday at 11:30 a.m. The Vandals lost Friday afternoon to Idaho State, 2-0.
Notes: Of Montana’s eight wins in Plakorus’s second season, three have now come against Boise State. ... The shutout was just the Grizzlies’ second blanking of the Broncos in the teams’ 12 all-time meetings. Montana won at home by the same 1-0 score in 2002.