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Falcon Roundup: Soccer wins home finale

Abby Soderholm

Soccer wins home finale

Senior midfielder Abby Soderholm's goal just over 13 minutes into the match held up to give the UW-River Falls women's soccer team a 1-0 victory over UW-Stevens Point in the Falcon's final home game of the season Saturday, Oct. 21, at Ramer Field.

Soderholm put back a rebound of a Mariah Troje header that hit the crossbar off a corner kick from Maddie Bleick at 13:45 for the only goal of the game.

Sophomore goalkeeper Haley Crosby finished with six saves to earn the shutout and her first victory of the season.

Earlier in the week the Falcons dropped a 1-0 nonconference decision to St. Olaf College Wednesday, Oct. 18, at Ramer Field. The lone goal for the Oles came in the 66th minute.

Soderholm drilled a potential game-tying shot that went just wide with under 10 minutes remaining while Crosby saved 10 of the 11 shots she faced.

UWRF, now 4-12-1 overall, 1-3-1 in the WIAC, will wrap up the regular season with a pair of conference road matches Wednesday, Oct. 25, at UW-Eau Claire and Saturday, Oct. 28, at UW-Platteville.

Volleyball wins twice in Ashland

The Falcon volleyball team went 2-0 at the St. Scholastica Triangular in Ashland Saturday, Oct. 21, defeating Bethany Lutheran College, 3-0, and the host Saints, 3-2, to improve to 18-12 on the season.

The Falcons will look for their first WIAC win of the season when they host a pair of conference matches this week, Wednesday, Oct. 25 against UW-Stevens Point and Friday, Oct. 27, against UW-Platteville. Both matches begin at 7 p.m. at Page Arena.

The Falcons swept Bethany Lutheran, 25-19, 25-17, 25-21, in their first match at the St. Scholastica Triangular last Saturday.

Dakotah Poitra and Hannah Meyer registered 11 kills each to lead the offense while Hannah Robb recorded 16 digs. Mallory Griffin dished out 17 assists and Hailey Huseth had 16 while Robb drilled four service aces.

UWRF dropped the first two sets to host St. Scholastica, 16-25, 18-25, before winning the next three, 25-14, 25-21, 15-7 to go 2-0 on the day.

Karli Nielsen recorded a team-high 13 kills while Poitra had 12 and Meyer added 10. Robb paced the defense with 16 digs while Griffin had 10 digs and 25 assists.

Women skaters picked to win WIAC

The four-time defending regular-season champion UW-River Falls Falcons have been selected to secure the 2018 Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) women's ice hockey championship, based on a preseason poll conducted by the league's head coaches and sports information directors.

The Falcons have also claimed four straight O'Brien Cup titles and made nine consecutive NCAA championship appearances. Their 29 victories a season ago matched a program single-season record from the 2014-15 campaign. This year's roster features 13 returning letterwinners, including senior forward Carly Moran and senior goalie Angie Hall. Moran is a two-time All-WIAC first team selection and has compiled 59 goals, 62 points and 121 points in her career. All three totals rank in the top eight on the conference's all-time list.

Hall is also a two-time All-WIAC first team honoree and ranks second in WIAC history with 67 career wins and ninth with 1,367 career saves. She also has amassed 13 career shutouts.

Sophomore forward Haley Herdine and sophomore defenseman Haley Nielsen also return after earning spots on the All-WIAC first team.

Head coach Joe Cranston starts his 19th season at UWRF after being named the WIAC Coach of the Year in 2017. The leader of the Falcon program since its inception in 1999, Cranston has a career record of 336-132-40.

UWRF will open the season in Michigan at the Adrian College Tournament this weekend, Oct. 27-28. Their home opener is Saturday, Nov. 4, at 2:05 p.m. against Bethel University.

Men's hockey picked for third

The Falcon men's hockey team is picked to finish third in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC), based on a preseason poll conducted by the league's head coaches and sports information directors.

UW-Eau Claire is picked to win the 2018 WIAC championship while defending regular conference champion UW-Stevens Point is predicted for second. UWRF is followed in the conference predictions by UW-Stout and UW-Superior.

UWRF has 10 letterwinners back from the 2016-17 squad that finished 12-13-2 overall, 3-4-1 in the WIAC. Junior forward Joe Drapluk, who had eight goals and four assists for 12 points, is back after earning All-WIAC first team honors, as is sophomore goalie Zach Quinn, who led the WIAC with a 1.89 goals-against-average and added 497 saves and 10 victories on his way to earning a spot on the All-WIAC first team and USCHO All-Rookie Team.

Senior defenseman Terry Leabo, an All-WIAC honorable mention selection a year ago, also returns after contributing one goal and five assists. Other notable returners include junior defensemen Brian Druplak and Ryan Gotelaere, junior forward Eddie Matsushima, and sophomore forward Aussie Miller.

Head coach Steve Freeman begins his 22nd season at UWRF with a career record of 368-192-48.

The Falcons kick off the 2017-18 season this weekend at Concordia University in Mequon Friday Oct. 27, and at Milwaukee School of Engineering Saturday, Oct. 28. Their home opener is Friday, Nov. 3, at 7:05 p.m. against St. John's University.

Bob Burrows
Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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