Women’s soccer concludes season, looks forward to future

By Sam Frost

The Mac Women’s soccer team ended the 2012 fall season with 10-6-1 record, closing out strong with a three-game winning streak, recording victories over St. Catherine’s, St. Mary’s and Gustavus Adolphus. The surge boosted the team to a fourth place finish in the MIAC, tied with St. Benedict at 6-4-1 in league play. However, the Scots failed to make the playoffs, losing out on the last spot to St. Benedict on tie-breaking criteria. It was a disappointing outcome for a talented squad that began the season with much promise after returning key players from last year’s team, which reached the postseason. The Scots held their own against stiff MIAC competition throughout the season, notching impressive victories against Augsburg and St. Thomas, both of whom finished in the top half of the league. However, at other points during the season, the Scots had problems making the plays needed to win close games, proving that the line between victory and defeat is often very fine. The team suffered numerous heartbreaking one-point losses in league competition, including a tight 2-1 loss to league regular season champion Concordia-Moorhead and 1-0 setbacks to St. Olaf and St. Benedict. These losses would come to haunt the Scots later in the season where their push for the playoffs would ultimately come up short. “It was definitely disappointing in the end,” Georgia Cloepfil ’14 said. “Looking back it feels like we had a really good season, but sometimes things just didn’t go our way.” Bonnie Bentson ’14 agreed as she reflected on how the briefest of moments can sometimes end up defining an entire season. “Obviously the results, in terms of playoffs and our finish in the MIAC, didn’t turn out the way we wanted it to,” she said, “But sometimes single games can determine the difference.” Indeed, the Scots would have needed to score a single additional goal to force a tie in one of its one-point losses in order to finish ahead of St. Benedict and sneak into the playoffs. After that, they could have potentially continued the winning streak they built at the end of the regular season, translating their momentum into postseason success. However, it was not to be, and the team found itself on the outside looking in, its season cut off sooner than planned. Despite the disappointing finish this year, the team is highly optimistic about its prospects for next fall. The Scots will return several important players, such as Cloepfil, a dangerous scoring threat who led the team with fifteen goals and eight assists this season, as well as Bonnie Gale ’15, who contributed with six goals, including a hat trick against Nebraska Wesleyan. “I’ve got a lot of hope for the team going forward into next season,” Cloepfil said. “We return most of our starting lineup. We’re only losing our center-backs and center-mids.” Bentson is anticipates a successful season but also acknowledges that the holes left by the team’s departing seniors will not be insignificant, despite the Scots’ plethora of key returnees. “I’m really excited about next year,” she said. “It’ll be hard to replace the seniors that we lose this year, and we’ll need people to step up. But we can definitely do it if it we want to.” In the meantime, the Scots are looking back on the 2012 season fondly remembering the experiences they shared as a team. “I love my team and I love being able to play with them,” says Bentson. “I think that we had a lot of fun.” refresh –>