Iowa soccer downs Illinois in overtime

The Hawkeyes defeated the Fighting Illini, 2-1, in the first round of the Big Ten Regional Weekend.


Grace Smith

Iowa forward, Meike Ingles, chest bumps the ball during the Iowa women’s soccer match v. Penn State at the Iowa Soccer Complex on Thursday, March 25, 2021. The Nittany Lions defeated the Hawkeyes 1-0.

Hunter Moeller , Sports Reporter

Iowa soccer is still alive after its 2-1 Big Ten Regional Weekend victory over Illinois Thursday night at Demirjian Park in Champaign, Illinois, because of a golden goal.

After 90 minutes of action sent the game into overtime, freshman forward Meike Ingles scored in the top right corner of the net off a pass from junior forward Samantha Tawharu in the 93rd minute to win the game.

It was Ingles’s first career goal.

In the second game of the season Feb. 25, Iowa fell to Illinois, 3-0. The Hawkeyes wanted to get payback.

The first half was tightknit between both teams, with Iowa taking a total of eight shots to Illinois’ seven. Despite the abundance of shots, neither team found the back of the net. The match was scoreless heading into halftime.

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After a strong performance on both ends of the ball in the first half, Iowa’s big break came two minutes into the second half.

Tawharu slithered her way through the Illinois defense at the top of the box and dropped a perfect ball to junior Josie Durr, who placed the ball in the upper right corner of the net. The score put the Hawkeye up, 1-0.

The Iowa lead was short-lived as the Fighting Illini tied the match in the 52nd minute with a goal from freshman Kennedy Berschel.

The rest of the second period was much like the first, as both teams created chances but neither capitalized.

Freshman goalkeeper Macy Enneking impressed once again with six saves, earning her third victory of the season.

Iowa led Illinois in shooting, 17-15. The Hawkeyes only put four shots on goal compared to the Fighting Illini’s seven.

Iowa head coach Dave DiIanni said his team wanted to show how much it has improved.

“This team was embarrassed last time we played Illinois early in the season on the very same field and wanted to give a better impression of who we are,” DiIanni said in a release. “And I think we did that tonight. Winning with a young team in this conference can be very hard, but we’ve stayed the course, committed to getting better every day, and the ladies were re-paid tonight by putting in 90-plus minutes of effort. We weren’t ready to stop this team’s growth, and we look forward to playing a good Minnesota team on Sunday.”

With the win, Iowa advances to the second round of the Big Ten Regional Weekend Sunday in a matchup against Minnesota. Minnesota’s matchup against Nebraska was declared a no-contest because of COVID-19. The winner of Sunday’s game will earn a spot in the Big Ten Tournament.

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