Fast start not enough for young Pipers

A 1-1 week shows progress for the first-year driven team.


Cole Mayer

Arendje Louter moves the ball past a UW- Stout defender on Oct. 6.

Jake Kjos, Reporter

A 2-0 shutout against UW-Stout looked to be the boost the team needed to beat St. Mary’s. The women’s soccer team switched from their usual 4-3-3 formation to a 4-4-2 in the nonconference match to try to fit the talent of the team.

Sophomore forward Alicia Williams described the switch and how it affected the team.

“We tried it because it wasn’t a MIAC game. It fit our team well. We had more numbers behind the ball defensively,” she said.

First-year forward Arendje Louter was also a fan of the formation change.

“I like playing the two-front. It’s more fun to have someone up there to work with.” Louter said.

Louter scored the first goal in the 19th minute for the Pipers on a cross from junior midfielder Malya Hirshkowitz.

“Malya crossed it in from the left side and I got my body on it. I kicked it in the far post and fell over,” Louter said.

Shortly after Louter’s goal, senior midfielder Aubrey Stenson scored a goal of her own off an assist from first-year midfielder Jensen Sevening.

“There was a lot of chaos. Crossing it was the only option,” Sevening said.

The Pipers held on for the win, despite not playing the way they wanted to after halftime.

“After five to ten minutes of being disorganized, we got it back together in the second half,” Sevening said.

Alicia Williams attempts to score in the second half on Oct. 6 against UW-Stout.
Cole Mayer
Alicia Williams attempts to score in the second half on Oct. 6 against UW-Stout.

On Oct. 10, the team traveled to MIAC opponent St. Mary’s. Louter once again opened up the scoring early with a goal assisted by Williams in the 12th minute. The Pipers held onto the lead throughout much of the match until things took a sharp turn.

St. Mary’s scored two goals in the last ten minutes to give the Pipers a 1-2 loss. Now 1-4-1 in MIAC play, the young team will look to build on their early success and try to change their second half letdowns.

“We don’t reward ourselves when we play well in the first half,” Louter said.

Underclassmen have had big roles this season, as three of the top four scorers for the Pipers are sophomores or younger. Louter’s goal against St. Mary’s gave her a team leading five goals and a total of twelve points for the season.

With a large class of ten first-year players, the team is aware that they are going to be seen as underdogs in most MIAC matchups. The strong play of the younger players makes them optimistic for the future of the program.

Williams is one player who has been impressed with the first-years’ play.

“A lot of them stepped up. They’re not in the freshman mindset,” Williams said.

Sevening has experience with this type of situation and talked about what it was like to be a part of such a young team.

“My high school team was exactly the same,” Sevening said. “There were 18 of us and 8 freshmen. Having people play together so long is pretty beneficial.”

The team is built for the future knowing that they have multiple years together to grow and improve on the successes they have had.

“It’s cool to know a big group you’ll develop with,” Louter said.

The Pipers play next at Augsburg on Friday, Oct. 16, then will travel to Iowa on Oct. 18 for a match against Waldorf.