SEWARD, Neb. – Second-year head coach Greg Henson’s squad found out it was cut out for life on the road, winning five-straight games outside of Seward before Wednesday’s home loss to College of Saint Mary. The Bulldogs are back at home for a late Saturday morning affair with Morningside (2-6-1, 0-1 GPAC). Kickoff is slated for 11 a.m. inside Bulldog Stadium.
Morningside (2-6-1, 0-1 GPAC) at Concordia (6-2, 1-0 GPAC)
Saturday, Sept. 27, 11 a.m.
Site: Seward, Neb.
Stadium: Bulldog Stadium
Webcast: Concordia Sports Network
Despite allowing College of Saint Mary to rally from a two-goal deficit, Concordia is off to one of its most impressive early-season runs in school history. The 6-1 record entering Wednesday’s game tied a school record for best seven-game start in program annals. The Bulldogs rank near the top of the GPAC in nearly all major statistical categories. They rate first among conference schools in assists per game (2.0), shots per game (17.75) and shots on goal per game (10.13), third in goals per game (2.63) and fourth in fewest goals allowed per game (1.25).
Individually, freshman Jessica Skerston has emerged as a headliner in her first season. The native of St. Charles, Mo., has scored at least one goal in all eight games to begin her collegiate career. Skerston’s 10 goals are tied for the second most in the GPAC and rate as the 11th most among all NAIA players. In addition, senior Melissa Stine checks in at No. 2 on the conference assists leaderboard with five.
On the other hand, Morningside has struggled to score through its first 10 games. The Mustangs rank 10th out of 11 GPAC teams with an average of 1.11 goals per game. Morningside comes in at No. 8 in the league in terms of goals allowed per game with a mean of 2.22. Since back-to-back wins over Grand View University (Iowa) and Northwestern College St. Paul, the Mustangs have dropped five in a row. Four of those defeats have come to teams either ranked or receiving votes in the national poll.
Eighty-percent of Morningside’s 10 goals have come from three players: Hope Forman (3), Amy Samuelson (3) and Amy Grause (2). The Mustangs entered 2014 having to replace their top goal scorer from the previous season – Kelsey Niles, who knocked in 17 goals in 2013. Head coach Tom Maxon (2013 GPAC coach of the year) has used both Britney Kleinhesselink (528 minutes) and Niccole McGuire (302 minutes) in goal this season.
The Mustangs won last season’s meeting with Concordia, 1-0, in Sioux City, Iowa. Morningside got the game’s lone goal in the 14th minute when Niles found the back of the net.