New Ulm girls open season with 2-2 tie vs. Osseo

Staff photo by Jake Calhoun New Ulm’s Jessica Moellenhoff dribbles past a defender in a nonconference girls’ soccer game against Osseo on Friday at New Ulm High School.

NEW ULM — New Ulm opened its season with a 2-2 tie in nonconference action against Osseo on Friday.

Eagles coach Jonathan Johnson was pleased with how his girls played against a physical Class AA squad in Osseo.

“The girls played really well today,” Johnson said. “I commend every one of them because they played their hearts out and they left it all on the field. Osseo is a physical team and they played well. So our girls stepped up to the task and I’m very pleased with the way they played.”

The Eagles trailed 1-0 after Kenya Davis scored with more than 32 minutes left in the first half. With a little more than 17 minutes to play in the first half, Gretchen Nistler gave the Orioles a 2-0 lead on a free-kick goal that floated just over the reach of New Ulm goalie Caleigh Heck, who had 12 saves on the day.

After a shot attempt from Madison Roufs was deflected, Elle Cooper put in the Eagles’ first goal of the day on the rebound to cut the deficit to 2-1 with more than 15 minutes to go in the half.

New Ulm tied things up at 2-2 after a 15-yard goal by Paige Kalis got past the right of the goalie with more than 31 minutes to play in the second half.

New Ulm ended regulation with multiple saves by Heck in the final 10 minutes of play and was able to force overtime. In overtime, Osseo appeared to have taken the lead after a shot by Emma Hauser went in, but an offsides erased the goal with just more than 2 minutes to play.

Neither team was able to get the upper hand in overtime, leading to the final 2-2 score. Johnson was still proud to see plenty of resiliency from his girls as they came back from trailing 2-0, but he felt that a couple of mistakes from his team led to the tie.

“I expected that they would come back,” Johnson said. “We had a lot of shots — a lot of opportunities — it’s just unfortunate that they capitalized on a couple of our mistakes.”

New Ulm had 11 shots on goal during the game.

New Ulm plays at 7 p.m. on Monday at Fairmont for a Big South Conference game.