Sunday, October 16, 2016

Big Sky Tonight 10.16.16: Idaho State wins again, EWU falters in title chase

Eastern Washington's game in hand in the race for the regular season title with Idaho ended up being empty as the Eagles fell on the road Sunday, 3-1, at Northern Arizona, leaving the idle Vandals up two points. NAU was the lone team to register a win at home in 10 Big Sky contests on the weekend.

Meanwhile, Sacramento pulled even in the table on points with Eastern with their third consecutive win - the longest in the conference - and the duo of Idaho State and Montana climbed back in the thick of the postseason picture with victories. Montana won at Southern Utah, 2-0, to sit fifth with NAU while the Bengals topped Weber State to move into fourth with three games left - a complete surprise considering the preseason coaches poll had them finishing dead last.

Eastern Washington 1 : 3 Northern Arizona  #####

Another Heather Donais (Kennewick, WA) corner kick gave the Lumberjacks the initial lead when she found Adrian Nixt in the 23rd minute, registering her team high fifth assist. The hosts held the advantage for a lengthy spell before Chloe Williams (Spokane, WA) scored in a one-on-one break in the 77th to even things up. The tie lasted less than two minutes, though, with Ali Lixandru taking advantage of goalkeeper Mallory Taylor being out of position Williams nearly tied it up again in the 86th with a powerful strike only to see Meghan Dickmann stretch full out to tip it over the goal. On the heels of that scare Nixt provided some insurance with a strike in the 89th as the unbeaten streak for Eastern, which suffered its first conference defeat, came to an end at 10 games.  MORE [+]  

Idaho State 1 :: 0 Weber State  #####

A cross from Meaghan Bare (Coeur d'Alene, ID) found Baylee Smithson in the 42nd minute to give the Bengals the lead on the road after outshooting the hosts 8-2 in the first half. Things reversed in the second half, however, after Jennifer McCaw was sent off in the 57th minute for a tackle from behind. The Wildcats outshot the visiting Bengals 14-0 for the half but Shawna Hennings kept them off the board, registering all 10 saves for the game in the half.  MORE [+]  

Montana 2 :: 0 Southern Utah  ##### 

McKenzie Warren scored twice in her home state to lead the Grizzlies to the road victory. She netted the first in the sixth minute of the contest and doubled the lead in the 25th. Maddie Vincent only need to make two saves on a blustery day as she posted her first career shutout playing in relief of Kailey Norman, who was not on the trip.  MORE [+]  

Sacramento State 1 :: 0 Northern Colorado  #####

A curling shot from Jennifer Lum in the 27th minute was all the Hornets needed with Destiny Butcher and Kaylyn Evans combining for the shutout in goal.

Portland State 1 :: 0 North Dakota  #####

Katie Forsee nodded home a Kristin Moyer free kick in the 31st minute with Abbie Faingold and Ashton Blanksma (Wenatchee, WA) combining for the shutout.

Remaining Regular Season Schedule ##### 

Friday, October 21
Northern Arizona at Idaho 3:00
Northern Colorado @ Eastern Washington 3:00
North Dakota @ Montana 3:00
Southern Utah @ Idaho State  4:00
Weber State @ Sacramento State 4:30
Sunday, October 23
Northern Colorado @ Montana 12:00
Northern Arizona @ Idaho State 1:00
Southern Utah @ Idaho 1:00
Weber State @ Portland State
Eastern Washington @ North Dakota
Friday, October 28
Idaho State @ Idaho
Montana @ Eastern Washington
North Dakota @ Northern Colorado 6:00
Southern Utah @ Northern Arizona 7:00
Sacramento State @ Portland State