| March 24, 2018

Soccer: Spokane Success

April 18, 2016

The Idaho soccer team traveled to Spokane, Washington to compete in a seven-on-seven tournament Saturday.

The Vandals split a roster of 19 healthy players into two teams for the tournament: Silver and black.

The Silver team consisted of more experienced players, while the Black team was composed of younger players.

Idaho head coach Derek Pittman said the tournament was a beneficial way to watch how his upperclassmen and inexperienced players competed.

Pittman said the Black team faced difficult opponents and struggled to maintain consistency. The Black squad finished sixth out of the eight teams in the group after a loss to Eastern Washington’s “B” team.

“Our Black team consisted of a lot of our younger players and some of our players that are working their way back into fitness,” Pittman said. “We wanted to give them every opportunity to play as many minutes as possible.”

The Silver team fared better in the tournament. The team earned a berth in the tournament championship before falling to Eastern Washington.

The Silver team finished first within its group to reach the semifinals, where the team defeated Montana 5-2.

Pittman said the Vandals entered the tournament championship with tough defense. The two teams ended the game locked in a 1-1 tie, prompting an Eastern Washington victory in penalty kicks.

Pittman said he was disappointed the championship had to be determined in penalty kicks, but he was still proud of his team.

“That definitely doesn’t take away anything in sense of how well we did on the day as a whole,” he said.
Pittman said three offensive players stood out during the competition.

Junior midfielder Elexis Schlossarek provided four goals and three assists for the team, while sophomore forward Olivia Baggerly contributed three goals. Junior forward Kavita Battan also scored twice.

Pittman said junior goalkeeper Torrell Stewart played well after freshman goalkeeper Julia Byerlein suffered a minor injury in the first game. Stewart finished the tournament with 55 saves and an 82 percent save percentage.

“She made a ton of big time saves that gave our team plenty of opportunities to win,” Pittman said.

The Idaho head coach said he was also impressed with the hustle and field awareness of sophomore midfielder Anna Rose Wiencek.

“It was a great day for our development,” Pittman said. “We hope to carry that out into the rest of the spring.”

The Vandals will host former players in the annual Alumni Game Saturday at Guy Wicks Field.

Brandon Hill can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.edu or on Twitter @brandonmtnhill  

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