Soccer drops exhibition game to Air Force
Published: Sunday, August 12, 2012
Updated: Sunday, August 12, 2012 14:08
The UNC soccer team opened its 2012 season with the first of two exhibition games against Air Force with a 2-1 loss to the Falcons Saturday at Jackson Field.
The game started off well for the University of Northern Colorado, which got a goal from senior forward Danielle Birdsall with 15:32 remaining in the first half.
The Falcons responded with two goals in the second half, one coming from freshman forward Allie Baumgarten and the game-winner coming from sophomore midfielder Tory Gullo after a corner kick.
Despite the loss, UNC head coach Tim Barrera said he was pleased with the overall performance of his players.
“For the most part, I was happy with how we played,” Barrera said. “We scored a good goal, we defended pretty well.”
While also saying that of course the goal was to win the game, Barrera also said it was important for his staff to get a look at all of his players in game action. In the second half, mostly freshmen took the field for the Bears to replace the starters. Late in the second half, some starters were placed back in the game to create a mix of veteran and younger players.
One veteran that was noticeably absent from the game was senior defender Aundreaha Martinez, who Barrera said was nursing an undisclosed leg injury. He described the injury as “nothing major” and was hopeful Martinez could be back in action as soon as Monday for UNC’s second exhibition game at 4 p.m. at Jackson Field, also against Air Force.
The Bears had 12 total shots to the Falcons’ seven, but UNC’s advantage on shots on goal was only four to three, and Air Force made them count.
Barrera said earlier in the week that the biggest change for the Bears this year would be having senior Natalie D’Adamio in goal instead of 2011 Big Sky Goalkeeper of the Year Kirstin Salminen, who had started for the better part of the previous four seasons.
“I thought she did pretty well,” Barrera said of D’Adamio’s performance. “Her distribution was good, her presence back there was good. She really didn’t have to do too much, as far as making a bunch of saves. On both goals, there really wasn’t a lot she could do. I thought she had a solid performance.”
Following Monday’s exhibition, UNC’s regular season starts at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Jackson Field as the Bears host the University of Colorado