Soccer tops NIU in overtime thriller

The Chippewas celebrate after their lone goal scored by Bloomington freshman Gaelle Wells during their game against Ball State Sept. 26 at the CMU Soccer Complex.

As the offense pushed into the opposing goal zone, senior Samantha Kaye-Toral struck the ball that was deflected and redirected for an overtime winner.

Central Michigan soccer (4-5) earned its first win in three games with a 1-0 win over Northern Illinois (4-7) in an overtime thriller.

“I didn’t like how we sat deeper on Sunday, so the past two days we’ve been practicing the press and (Kaye-Toral) was the trigger behind that,” said CMU head coach Jeremy Groves.

How it happened

CMU found their groove as they pushed the ball past midfield to set up quality opportunities on goal in the first half. It was a back and forth, but the Chippewas showed much more ball control and held a majority of possessions. 

CMU senior Maria Kaschalk had a crowd-pleasing defensive battle with NIU graduate student Haley Hoppe that helped the game remained at a score of 0-0.

“Hoppe has a lot of height over Maria, but she’s an extremely good defender and we knew she could hold her own,” Groves said.

The Chippewas came out of the locker room with intensity for the second half. They fired off seven total second half shots and kept pressure on the NIU defense. 

NIU had a few great offensive sets with good opportunities, but CMU sophomore Allison LaPointe caught everything in net. Both teams clamped down with defensive pressure for a 0-0 score and CMU’s third overtime appearance of the season.

As overtime commenced the Chippewas quickly picked up the pace and applied an all-out offensive attack as Kaye-Toral scored the game-winner.

Key Stats

CMU had 13 shots and eight on goal compared to NIU’s eight shots and four on goal.

CMU had seven corner opportunities while NIU had two corners.

There was a total of 17 fouls only five on CMU and 12 on NIU.

CMU had two yellow cards.

Key Performers

Kaye-Toral had her first goal of the season off four shots and was the spark plug for the Chippewas offensive attack. LaPointe with her fourth shutout of the year held down the goal making four saves off eight shots faced.

Hoppe had five shots and three on goal.

Up Next

It’s western weekend as the Chippewas face off long-time rivals Western Michigan at 2 p.m. on Sunday at the WMU Soccer Complex in Kalamazoo, MI.

Scoring Summary

1OT (97:17) CMU (1-0) Samantha Kaye-Toral