GRAND FORKS, N.D. – During the week leading up to North Dakota’s exhibition opener against Jamestown, first-year head coach Chris Logan said he wanted to see his Fighting Hawks play aggressively with an attacking mindset.
Logan’s team delivered on that request today, owning a 38-4 advantage in shot attempts in a 1-0 victory over the visiting Jimmies at Bronson Field.
The two teams played three 30-minute periods and the host team got progressively better throughout, culminating with a dominant third frame in which UND attempted 23 shots and held Jamestown to nary an attempt.
Freshman Mimi Eiden scored the game’s lone goal at 60:14, though the 1-0 score masked the decisive edge in possession. Jamestown goalkeepers Lauren Sayler and Sophie Ledger combined for 14 saves, including nine by Ledger in the final frame.
UND also hit the bar on three occasions.
“I think the third 30 minutes, we really controlled the game and that’s when I think the nerves really left the team,” said Logan. “I think we were certainly pretty anxious throughout the game. We were kind of tentative, afraid to make mistakes. We were certainly trying to get back into game mode and it took us a little bit of time do to that. But that’s to be expected in the first game of the preseason.”
Eiden’s goal came 14 seconds into that period. After junior Katie Moller’s rush up the middle was stymied, the ball squirted ahead to Eiden, who had snuck in behind the defenders. The Forest Lake, Minn., native made no mistake with her attempt, burying the ball lower right past a diving Ledger.
Eiden’s goal finally broke the deadlock after numerous missed opportunities by the Fighting Hawks.
“The positive was we created a lot of chances,” said Logan. “The negative was we were snatching at them a little bit.
Logan said a point of emphasis before Tuesday’s exhibition game against Bemidji State will be converting on scoring chances.
“When we’re in these great positions, have the composure to put the ball in the net and not snatch at our chances. Even though we didn’t play great, I don’t think I’ve ever been a part of a game where we’ve only scored one goal when we’ve hit the bar three times and we missed a couple over the net and missed three or four breakaways.”
Junior goalkeeper Olivia Swenson received the starting assignment for UND and stopped the lone shot on goal she faced during her 45 minutes, 16 seconds of playing time. Sophomore Jacqueline Wells played the remaining half of the game but did not see any shots on goal.
In all, 24 players got into the game for the Fighting Hawks.
“We managed to cater certain time constraints for some players who are going to play more Tuesday. Some who won’t play Tuesday, we gave them more time today,” said Logan.
UND hosts Bemidji State at 6 p.m. Central on Tuesday night and will open the regular season Aug. 18 at North Dakota State.
Notes: Moller assisted on Eiden’s goal and had a game-high seven shots (3 shots on goal) … Junior Kennedy Kidd and freshmen Megan Wright and Ashley Ebeling were next with five shots each … Jamestown did not have any players with more than one shot and Kirstyn Aldridge had the lone shot on goal for the Jimmies.