Women’s soccer loses tourney game in Orange Beach

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Women’s soccer loses tourney game in Orange Beach

Story by Levi Blaylock, Writer

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The No. 11 women’s soccer team saw its season come to an end Tuesday night in the second round of the 2015 NAIA National Championship in Orange Beach, Alabama. No. 6 ranked Spring Arbor put up three first-half goals against the Wildcats and hung on for a 3-0 win.

“The first 20 minutes got away from us, and the other team took advantage of the opportunities we gave them,” sophomore Kady Dieringer said. “The nerves and pressure of such an important game were definitely visible, but now the experience will benefit us in the future.”

With this victory, Spring Arbor moved on to the quarterfinals, while the Wildcats’ season ended with a record of 16-5-1. Baker finished the Heart of America Athletic Conference regular season as the second-best team at 8-2-0. The Wildcats also lost in the Heart title game to Benedictine College, which continued its run into the NAIA quarterfinals.

“I was not satisfied with our last game because we didn’t show what we are capable of, but as whole, I am proud of our season,” junior Katie Hibbeler said. “At the beginning of the year we weren’t even ranked so to make it to the national tournament was a huge accomplishment for us. I am so proud to be a part of this team. We played our hearts out all season, and I think every single person contributed to our success.”

Spring Arbor outshot Baker 24-6 in the contest, and 2015 Heart Defensive Player of the Year junior Krista Hooper led Baker with two shots. Kara Doctor and Kady Dieringer each had one shot on goal for Baker.

“I honestly believe in my heart that we are one of the best women’s soccer teams to have played at Baker,” senior Jenna Carducci said. “Some teams might have been more successful, but we are such a diverse and talented team. We beat the school record for number of wins in a season if that says anything.”

While Carducci has played her last season for Baker, many returning players are looking forward to next season.

“Since we are such a young team, we have high hopes for next year,” Hibbeler said. “Although we are losing Jenna, who is a very valuable player, we have a great group of returning players. We have great team chemistry and I am so excited to see what our future has in store for us.”