Late Goal Lifts SDSU Past Utah State In Season Opener

Jacks Beat Aggies 1-0

BROOKINGS, S.D.  —  South Dakota State women’s soccer used a staunch defensive effort and late-game heroics from Karlee Manding to move past Utah State in its 2019 season opener Friday, 1-0.

After 88 minutes of scoreless play, an Aggie handball in the box set Manding up for a penalty kick with the clock winding down, and the sophomore delivered. SDSU closed out the final two minutes of action and improved to 1-0 on the season.

“I think our players felt like that was a good first step for us,” head coach Brock Thompson said. “I thought we were really dangerous when we were able to find our forwards early. Our forwards and attacking midfielders did a great job of being dynamic on the ball, and our defenders and Maggie (Smither) stepped up big for us. There were a lot of positives and a lot of things we could improve on, but overall I thought it was a great first game for us to learn from.”

The back-and-forth contest saw a flurry of scoring opportunities, with the Jackrabbits firing 15 shots (three on target) and Utah State launching 10 (five on target). Goals, though, were hard to come by as both defenses stepped up in their halves of the field.

SDSU held a narrow advantage in possession time (52 to 48 percent), but needed five saves from Maggie Smither to keep the Aggies off the board. One of those saves came in the 68th minute, when Utah State broke away from the Jackrabbit defense, only to be denied inside the box by Smither.

Sunniva Dunagan fired a team-high three shots in the game, while Manding and Carina McLennan added a pair. Shayna Stubbs and Abigail Kastens added shots on target for the Jackrabbit offense.

Game Notes

  • South Dakota State is now 1-2 all-time against Utah State and 6-12-2 in season openers.
  • 20 Jackrabbits saw the field in the win, including six who made their debut at SDSU: Maya Hansen, Gabby Vivier-Hannay, Adalaide Kline, Maureen Tolley, Eden Brooker and Emily Cameron.
  • Maggie Smither now has 205 saves and is 10 shy of joining the top three at SDSU.
  • Karlee Manding has now tallied a point (goal or assist) in seven of 15 games as a Jackrabbit.

Up Next
South Dakota State wraps up the opening weekend Sunday against Idaho State. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. from Fishback Soccer Park on Hometown Heroes Day. Brookings area first responders will receive free admission to the game, and fans will have a chance to meet hometown heroes from the Brookings Police, Fire & Rescue Departments, who will have vehicles and equipment on hand to explore.

-Recap Courtesy SDSU Athletics

Categories: College Sports, Colleges – South Dakota State, Sports