BILLINGS, Mont. – In a true clash of the titans match up, Montana State-Billings faced off against No. 5 Colorado Mines. The highly anticipated matchup did not disappoint as the Yellowjackets edged out the Orediggers 1-0 to begin their regular season.
From the beginning of the game, the balance of power between teams was evident. The Yellowjackets had 16 returning letter winners compared to the Orediggers’ 15. Both teams had freshman goal keepers starting their first collegiate contest. Alexandria Johnson started between the pipes for MSUB and Jayln Yates started for Colorado Mines.
The Yellowjackets came out fast in the first half and attacked the Oredigger defense. Janae Remsberg took the first shot on goal of the game in the sixth minute but Yates made a good save on the play. Colorado Mines countered with three consecutive shots with two being on target. Co-captain Jennifer Larsen and the Jackets backline held up tight not allowing any goals.
MSUB weathered the storm and came back with their own offensive surge. Junior forward Heidi Greenback took two shots, with one on target and senior co-captain Jaucelyn Richter took one shot on goal. The first period came to a close with Colorado Mines taking two more shots on goal.
|COLORADO MINES VS. MSUB|
The Yellowjackets and Orediggers went into the half tied 0-0. In total, MSUB took four shots compared to Colorado Mines’ six.
In the second half, the Jackets threw the first offensive blows with three consecutive shots by three different players. Freshman Katlyn Lokay took her first regular season shot on goal in this flurry. The Orediggers defense did not break and the team came back on offense and took two wide shots.
The turning point in the contest came in the 78th minute when sophomore midfielder Chelsea Shuman bent a shot past Yates to land in the back right corner of the goal. The score marks the first career goal for Shuman as a Yellowjacket.
Feeling the pressure, the Orediggers made several substitutions to try to gain an offensive advantage, but second-year head coach Wojtek Krakowiak countered this strategy with several substitutions on the backline and midfield. Colorado Mines took two more shots on goal, but Johnson effectively played each attempt and made key saves in the closing minutes.
“It was a great match and we are very happy with the result,” Krakowiak said. “Colorado Mines were very competitive and played a great game, they are a very accomplished program. We fought hard and in the end our team wanted it more. I would like to congratulate the team on the win, and thank coach Kevin Fickes and the team for their effort and play today.”