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Iowa soccer still undefeated after beating UNI

BY PATRICK MASON | SEPTEMBER 15, 2011 7:20 AM

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The Iowa women's soccer team stayed hot on a very cool Wednesday night, defeating Northern Iowa, 2-0, at the Iowa Soccer Complex.

Forward Leah DeMoss provided all the scoring needed for the Black and Gold when she scored in the 24th minute and again in the 46th.

"As a team, we felt a lot better than our Sunday game [a 5-0 win over South Dakota], where we were a bit disappointed," DeMoss said. "Today we came out a lot stronger."

Most of the game was played in Northern Iowa territory as the Hawkeyes kept the Panthers on their heels. Despite a relatively quiet night from leading scorer Cloé Lacasse, Iowa mustered 12 shots on goal.

"They always had a player right on Cloe's back, but she was able to distribute to the outside, and we were able to use that," DeMoss said.

Iowa's defense has been strong this season — only giving up five goals and never more than one in a game — and it showed up again, only allowing six shots on goal, one in the first half.

Iowa head coach Ron Rainey thought the team came out and played well — especially the defense.

"It was a very workmanlike game where we didn't give up a lot of chances defensively," he said.

"There were a couple opportunities where DeMoss had to finish, and she did."

The sixth-year coach said he thought his team executed the game plan well.

"Our goal tonight was to come out and play safe defensively, not give up a lot of chances, and also be dynamic in the attack," Rainey said. "You have to give credit to Northern Iowa. They were organized defensively, and that made it hard to break them down."

Iowa goalkeeper Emily Moran played a large role in keeping the defense positioned correctly throughout the game.

"We were really focusing on playing to our level and playing our game, instead of what they were showing us," Moran said.

The win was the last non-conference game of the season for Iowa, and the senior goalkeeper said the energy in the locker room was intense.

"We were all ready to go and ready to play, and for me, it felt like a Friday night game," Moran said. "I think for some people it was awkward playing in the middle of the week, but we have to get used to that because that's what we have in the Big Ten, and our energy level was very good."

The Hawkeyes exit nonconference play with an untarnished 8-0-0 record, and they will try to transfer the success to Big Ten play against No. 23 Illinois in the league opener on Sept. 18.

"That's the trick — over the past couple of years, we've had some decent success [in nonconference] but not as much as we've had this year in our nonconference schedule," Rainey said. "The reality is, this isn't last year, and this isn't two years ago. This is this year, and we just need to prepare so we can feel confident when we take the field against Illinois."

The players said they are ready to move into conference play, and Moran said she feels the team has grown a lot so far this season.

"We need to work on some more little things like getting behind balls and moving our feet, but overall I think we will be great on Sunday," Moran said.


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