NORMAL, Ill. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) - Green Bay (3-5-0) battled the defending Missouri Valley Conference Champions tough on the road on Wednesday afternoon, but Illinois State (6-2-2) scored the game-winning goal in the 78th minute to post a 2-1 victory in non-conference women's soccer action.
"I felt we played a very physical and strong Illinois State team quite well," said head coach Trevor Warren. "I was pleased with the overall effort of everyone that played today.
Illinois State struck first on its home court, getting a goal in the 22nd minute when Aimee Wronski found Kyla Cross with a cross and a 1-0 Redbird lead.
The Phoenix struck for the equalizer in the 41st minute when a Chanel Aries (Calgary, Alberta) shot was saved by ISU keeper Aryn Newsom but sophomore Hannah Kernen (Belleville, Wis.) put the rebound into the net. It was Kernen's second marker of the season.
"We came back well from conceding the first goal and thoroughly deserved to tie it before the half with the goal from Hannah," Warren said. "We were certainly the stronger team going into the interval."
The teams played 30-plus minutes of the second half before the game-winner was scored by the Redbirds. The Phoenix had a chance just minutes earlier when Kernen broke through in the box, but she was tackled by an ISU defender and no penalty kick was awarded. Wronski scored the game winner with a shot from the top of the box in the 78th minute.
Sophomore Katy Pilarzyk (Madison, Wis.) stopped a season-high eight shots
"We had some other good chances to go ahead but the final shot or cross eluded us," Warren said. It's tough to play a strong team on the road but we fought them until the final whistle. If we play like that in our league games we will be tough to beat. We are looking forward to starting league play at home on Saturday, and I know we will be ready."
Green Bay opens Horizon League play on Saturday at home, welcoming Detroit to Aldo Santaga Stadium for a 12 p.m. start.
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