NSIC in MN: Katie Anderson paces Concordia St Paul, Mankato scores a touchdown and Winona, UMD and St Cloud fight to contend for the post season
6 games into the Northern Sun Conference season is about all it took for teams to shake into their typical tiers, with a couple of exceptions. Typical postseason participants Mankato, Concordia and Bemidji are challenging for the top of the table. Mankato is running up goals on some of the teams lower in the standings, while Concordia is looking to challenge at the top after knocking off Bemidji. University of Mary is a surprise undefeated team in third and as expected, Winona, UMD and St Cloud are fighting out the middle of the conference to prove they can take a step up. Dig into the NSIC standouts, the past two weeks of game recaps, and stay til the end to find upcoming games to watch!
Concordia comes out strong with big goals from Katie Anderson
After a tough 1-0 loss at home to Augustana to start the NSIC season, Concordia is undefeated in their last 5, scoring wins over Bemidji, Wayne State, Moorhead State and Crookston, while tying Northern. One reason for the run: Katie Anderson has been on fire. She was last week's Offensive Player of the week after a game winning goal at Bemidji and another at Crookston. She bagged another 3 goals last week against Moorhead and Northern State to take her total to 6 on the year (watch out Jenny Vetter!). Concordia have a run of winnable games the next few weeks, but they're all on the road. If the Golden Bears can take a good chunk of points off Winona, Upper Iowa, UMD and St Cloud, they'll be sitting pretty for a more difficult end of the NSIC slate.
Mankato Rolls with 24 goals in 6 games
Two weeks ago we covered the big early season matchup between Mankato and Bemidji. Bemidji were up 1-0 with a minute left in the game when Jenny Vetter headed a bounced ball over the Bemidji keeper to steal a point away from home (See below). It could appear to be a sign of the teams resiliency, that even in a game they struggled to create, they found a way to salvage a result. Mankato has not been light on goals since then, feasting on some lower tabled squads. 6-0 on Wayne State, 4-2 over Augustana, 7-0 at Crookston and 6-0 at Moorhead. Opposing coaches will try to focus on the way Bemidji held them to a late goal and the fact that Northern State were able to snag a 0-0 draw in Mankato. The Mavericks goe to Upper Iowa and Winona this week, followed by tripes to St Cloud and UMD.
Winona's stout Defense keeping it in games, St Cloud and UMD chasing
Don't look now but Winona State has already matched their win total from '21 and have lost just once in their first 6 NSIC games. They're coming off a solid weekend of draws against Minot and U Mary, who're both very competitive this year. The challenge for this team appears to be finding ways to put goals in the back of the net, but they've certainly decided that nothing will come easy for their opposition. In 6 conference games (4 away), they've only given up 5 goals. Winona currently sits in 8th place, the final spot for a postseason birth, but UMD and St Cloud sit right behind them in the standings, each at 2-2-2 in NSIC play. If the Warriors want to keep their spot, they'll have to find something out of two tough games this weekend as they host Concordia and Mankato, before going to Bemidji next friday. After that they could find an easier end of the schedule to wrap up NSIC play.
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