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STORY BY JEREK WOLCOTT-ISU SPORTS INFORMATION
POCATELLO, Idaho - Keeping with the recent history in the Idaho State-Montana soccer rivalry, Saturday’s match ended in a 1-1 draw.
For the third consecutive matchup, including the 2012 Big Sky Title match, the Bengals (4-5-1, 1-0-1 BSC) and Griz (3-4-4, 0-1-1 BSC) played to tie.
The first half was a battle of runs and great saves. At the break the Grizzlies led Idaho State in shots 9-8 but the Bengals held the advantage in shots on goal 6-3.
Early in the second half the Griz were the aggressors. Montana’s pressure paid off in the 61st minute when the ball bounce off an ISU player to an open Maddey Frey in front of the goal. Frey sent the ball past the outstretched arms of Sheridan Hapsic.
Just 15 minutes later Bengal Tara Bice sent a pass to Whitney Peterson 10 yards out to the left of the goal. Peterson sent the ball into the net for her the equalizer, her second goal in as many matches.
Peterson’s emergence in the last two games in is an outcome of increased determination.
“She was really struggling with her confidence but she a turned a corner and I can see her playing more freely,” Head coach Allison Gibson said. “When you get that first goal it is going to give you a confidence boost and I can see it in her game.”
The remainder of the match was a series of scoring chances by both teams and great saves by Hapsic and Montana goalkeeper Kendra McMillen.
Montana had a chance to win the match in the 103 minute when Chloe Torres sent a ball high towards the net. Hapsic perfectly timed her jump to tip the ball over the bar and make the save.
The Bengals had a near goal of their own. In the 109th minute Lia Margolis headed a centering pass nearly into the goal but McMillen got her hands on the ball to make the save.
The Bengals continue Big Sky play Thursday at Northern Arizona. The Lumberjacks are 1-0 in Big Sky play with a 3-2 win over Southern Utah Saturday.