Birdsall leads Bears to opening night victory against Cowgirls
LARAMIE, WYO. -- The Northern Colorado women's soccer squad is coming back from Wyoming satisfied after an opening night 2-1 win at Louis S. Madrid Sports Complex.
The Bears, who gained some revenge after losing 1-0 to the Cowgirls in Greeley last season, were propelled by Danielle Birdsall's two goals.
Birdsall, a sophomore from Broomfield, put away her first goal in the 32nd minute when she knocked home an Olivia Deadmond cross, beating goalkeeper Courtney Merkle. The second of Birdsall's goals came just five minutes into the second half when she let go a shot that hit the post before crossing the goal line. With those two goals, Birdsall has already almost reached her total for last season, when she scored three total.
Not only was the win a perfect way to start the season for Northern Colorado, but the win also gave head coach Tim Barrera his 100th win at the head of the Bears' program, running his record at Northern Colorado to 100-95-10.
Northern Colorado goalkeeper Kirstin Salminen also played a very strong 90 minutes, allowing just one goal off a header by Jenny Johnson. Salminen made five saves compared to four by Merkle.
The Bears will look to continue their winning ways when they come home on Sunday, August 22, to face instate-rival Air Force in their home opener. Last season, the Bears defeated the Falcons 3-1 at the Air Force Academy and will hopefully be able to continue that trend at Jackson Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 2 p.m.