In-state matchup goes to Bellevue

BELLEVUE, Neb. – The visiting Bulldogs played No. 21 Bellevue to a 0-0 draw for the first 50 minutes of Wednesday night’s in-state, non-conference matchup. However, the host Bruins ignited for three goals between the 52nd and 59th minutes in route to a 4-1 victory.

Concordia (0-3), in action for the first time since a 5-4 home loss to the University of Nebraska-Kearney on Aug. 23, fired off only seven shots compared to Bellevue’s 14. The Bulldogs pushed across a goal at the 73:09 mark as sophomore midfielder Rachel Mussell continued her impressive play in depositing her fourth goal of the season.

“Our offensive possessions were much better (than in the first two games). We were less frantic and more composed on the ball,” Concordia head coach Lisa White said. “Our decision making was better and we played with a purpose.”

The Bruin’s Jenica Bloom finally added a tally to the scoreboard at the 51:33 mark off the assist from Betsy Fischenich. Fischenich followed that effort up with another assist about four minutes later as Paige Wischmann put away the goal. Bloom then recorded her second goal in the 59th minute, aided by the assist from Yaritza Estrada. Fischenich put the game out of reach in the 84th minute with an unassisted goal.

“Our back line got caught watching,” White said. “We didn’t respond very well. They got behind us and got a lot of one versus one on our goalkeepers, and those are tough to stop.”

Freshman Elyse Muhle made her third-straight start in goal for the Bulldogs and played the first 66:40 before giving way to junior Jessica Clifford. Muhle made three saves and was charged with three goals allowed. Clifford, playing for the first time this season, gave up the final goal against a Bruin team that set up several clean looks on goal.

Concordia tried to fight back on the strength of the Mussell goal. Just 51 seconds later, junior defender Emily Fleming misfired on a penalty kick. Melissa Stine and Morgan Ihde both had shots on goal in the final 8:05 but were stymied by Bellevue goalkeeper Caitlin Stier.

Up next for the Bulldogs is a 1 p.m. road contest at Sterling College (Kan.) on Sept. 15. Concordia will return home Sept. 19 to host another in-state rival with York College coming to Seward for a 5 p.m. match.