With junior Laura Moklestad’s goal in the 40th minute and a strong defensive effort, Drake clinched a spot in the State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Championship tournament.
The Bulldogs (4-10-4, 2-4 MVC) held off Northern Iowa for a 1-0 win at Cownie Soccer Complex last Thursday.
Drake earned the fifth seed in the tournament and played No. 4 seed Evansville on the road yesterday.
The Purple Aces also won 1-0 last Thursday night and garnered the tiebreaker over the Bulldogs to receive the higher seed and a first-round home game. Details from that match will be available in the next issue of The Times-Delphic.
The Panthers (8-9-2, 2-4 MVC) earned the sixth and final seed for the tournament.
Moklestad’s goal was a redirection of sophomore Brittany Schuling’s shot. Schuling was credited with the assist.
Sophomore goalkeeper Kalena Litch collected eight saves, and she moved to the top of the Drake saves list for a single season.
“It wasn’t the prettiest of games, but with so much on the line both teams were competing at a high-intensity level,” head coach Lindsey Horner said in a Drake athletics press release. “Our girls responded to a tough road trip last weekend with a great week in training and an eagerness to play tonight. The ball hasn’t always bounced our way this season, but our team has been working hard to improve each week.”
UNI outshot Drake 19-16 in the contest. Sophomore Paige Dusek led the Bulldogs with three shots.
In the last five minutes, the Panthers had a shot ricochet off the crossbar and had a goal waived off due to an off-side call.
“We had several players that filled their role (last Thursday night), and whether they played 90 minutes, five minutes or were on the bench, they helped us win,” Horner said.