K-State Uses Trio of Goals to Dispatch UMKC, Close Exhibition Slate
KANSAS CITY – There was nothing unofficial about the relief and excitement displayed by K-State soccer in a 3-0 victory over UMKC to close exhibition play at Durwood Stadium Sunday afternoon. Three different Wildcats tallied goals, the end product of a wide-ranging offensive effort that ultimately ended a six-match scoreless streak for the Cats in exhibition contests.
“Finally,” said K-State forward Katie Cramer after corralling a cross from Aly Rocha and burying the ball in the net in the 15th minute to open scoring. Cramer was denied in K-State’s exhibition opener Friday night at No. 19 Minnesota, her try ricocheting off the cross bar towards the end line in a then-scoreless contest before being grabbed by the keeper. It was just the latest near miss in a collective scoring drought that spanned five spring matches against some of the top sides in the country, but Sunday offered a welcome change.
Cramer gave the Wildcats a 1-0 lead early in the contest and at the half, delighting her team and the 466 in attendance – the majority of which wore purple. K-State freshmen Hannah Davis (57’) and Brookelynn Entz (75’) added additional tallies for the Cats in the second half.
“It was really nice to finally see us score some goals, just that feeling,” Cramer, a sophomore from Goddard, Kansas, said. “We worked really hard throughout the spring and also in preseason, so it’s good to see that out on the field and it always feels good to win.
“I just crushed it in, went hard. It was a great ball from Aly Rocha, it was perfect. She set it up on a platter for me, I just had to tap it in.”
Playing their second road game of the weekend, the Wildcats played the entire travel squad in the final tune-up before this week’s regular season opener and saw a shared effort in the scoring third as eight different players contributed to the team’s 12 total shots.
Tatum Wagner didn’t find the back of the net Sunday, but was one of the most active Wildcats offensively, nearly connecting on a cross from Christina Baxter in the 32nd minute, then had a shot inside the 18-yard box blocked by the defender just four minutes later. Wagner served a ball in to Baxter near the end of the first half, but Cramer’s tally off a free kick set-piece was the only score by either side in the first half.
At the break, former K-State women’s basketball assistant Jayci Hoyt, who is in her first year as the head coach at UMKC, was introduced along with her coaching staff, including former Wildcat guard Kindred Wesemann.
K-State got on the board a little more than 11 minutes into the second half, as Maddie Sauder made deep run, and instead of forcing a shot around her defender in a one-on-one situation, flicked a pass pass to a charging Davis on the right side who beat the keeper. Davis then nearly scored minutes later, making a run of her own but a contested try rolled wide.
Wagner again pushed the tempo for K-State’s third goal, forcing her way into the 18-yard box where she was dragged down by the defender. That set up a penalty kick for Entz, who lifted the ball into the upper right corner for the Wildcats’ third and final tally with 16 minutes to play.
In all, K-State outshot UMKC 12-8 and led in corners, 3-2. Tania Chassot started in goal and saved five shots in the first half while combining with Miranda Larkin (two saves) on a shutout.
“We played everybody today and it was great to see that everybody contributed in some sort of fashion, impacted the game,” K-State head coach Mike Dibbini said. “Whether they started or came off the bench, the rhythm and tempo kept up and I felt like it was good soccer.
“We have a lot of positives – we definitely have work to do, but we have a lot of positives and we’re headed in the right direction. We’re miles ahead offensively and defensively and I like what I see.”
The Wildcats open the 2017 regular season in Oregon against Oregon State on August 18 and Oregon on August 20. The Wildcats will not return home until August 30, when they face off against Omaha at 7 p.m.
Single-game, standing-room only tickets for K-State home matches are available through the K-State Athletics Ticket Office (800-221-CATS, www.kstatesports.com/tickets). Tickets start at just $5 when purchased in advance. Standing room only group tickets are available for $3 with the purchase of 12 or more tickets. On match days, general admission tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for children (12 and under), military personnel and senior citizens. Grandstand seating is sold out. All single-game tickets and new season tickets are available as standing room only, which includes the southwest grass berm, behind the north goal and designated areas on the east side of the field.
To become a member of the K-State Founder’s Club and have access to season tickets for the 2017 season, contact the K-State Athletics Ticket Office at (800) 221-CATS or www.kstatesports.com/tickets.