Annah Schussman scored twice in Team White’s 6-4 win.
Photo by Emily Wald
After a long wait, the Yellowjacket women’s soccer team was finally able to make its 2020 debut on the pitch on Oct. 10, competing in an intrasquad contest at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex in Superior.
Team Black came out strong, scoring three of the first four goals in the match, but Team White rallied, coming all the way back to pick up the 6-4 win.
The teams were feeling each other out in the early going, and the first several minutes elapsed with neither team getting a shot on goal.
Team Black had the first scoring chance of the match, but the shot solidly hit the crossbar and things stayed scoreless. That changed at 10:18 of the opening frame when Lindrey Schendel (Firestone, Colo./Skyline) took a shot from the left side of the box that went off a defender and into the goal to make it 1-0.
Black’s lead didn’t last long, however, as just 13 seconds later White came back to tie it. Annah Schussman (Bemidji, Minn./Bemidji), who led the Yellowjackets with nine goals a year ago and is the top returning scorer in 2020, scored her first of the match from about 10 yards out at 10:31.
Black regained the lead at 16:16 when Allison Alessi (Shakopee, Minn./Prior Lake) drilled a shot with her right foot into the back of the goal from the middle of the box to make it 2-1. Black increased its lead to 3-1 just over seven minutes later when Alessi struck for her second of the match. That goal seemed to light a fire underneath White, as they came roaring back from the two-goal deficit.
Kenzie Oehlerking (Farmington, Minn./ Farmington Area) started the comeback, scoring at 30:29 to pull White to within one at 3-2. Less than a minute later the match was tied, when newcomer Kaitlyn Raisch (Hopkins, Minn./Hopkins) scored her first of the match. White would take its first lead of the match at 32:52 on a goal by Tori Vosburg (Cloquet, Minn./Esko), and then increase the lead to 5-3 when Raisch scored her second of the match at 36:40.
All told, Team White scored four times in a span of 6:11 in battling from two goals down to take the lead.
Team Black didn’t go away quietly, however. Alessi completed the hat trick with her third of the match at 45:15, and once again the deficit was just one. The drama ended at 56:09, however, when Schussman scored her second of the match to salt things away, giving White the 6-4 victory.
Both goaltenders, Madison Gutekunst (Mound, Minn./Mound Westonka) for White and Morgan Philliber (Apple Valley, Minn./Edina) for Black, played spectacularly at times, making dazzling saves to keep the match close.
The teams will meet again Saturday, October 17. The opening kickoff will be at 1:00 p.m. at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex.