Giddings Golden Goal, Wright’s Brace Lifts UND past Kansas City
FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - After a Megan Wright second-half brace tied the match 2-2, Cassie Giddings’ golden goal 24 seconds into overtime put the University of North Dakota back in the win column over Kansas City, 3-2.
The match marked UND’s (4-5 Summit) first comeback win of the season and its first by a two-goal deficit under Head Coach Chris Logan. Wright’s goals were her first and second of the season, while Giddings’ game winner was also her second. In addition, Giddings tallied the Fighting Hawks lone assist of the match.
North Dakota trailed 1-0 at halftime and was unlucky not to score a goal or two in the opening 45 minutes as it controlled the pace and ball possession to that point in the match. Kansas City (4-7-1, 4-6-1 Summit) took advantage on the right flank in front of its bench as Kylie Cushing put one into the far post netting to break the shutout with 6.5 minutes remaining.
Kansas City doubled its lead on an Anna Jennings goal in the 52nd minute that sparked the Fighting Hawks and created a greater sense of urgency on its attacking end.
Wingers Lexi Miller and Giddings flew up and down their respective ends throughout the match, but controlled the ball and the pace of play with their movement in the remaining 38 minutes of regulation. In the 57th minute, Giddings setup Wright at the top of the 18-yard box and allowed the senior to place the ball in the far post netting and past goalkeeper Mackenzie Caldwell.
As the Fighting Hawks continued to pester Caldwell and the KC defense, Bailey McNitt attacked inside the penalty area in the 73rd minute and was quickly fouled by Madison Zurmuehlen to award UND a penalty. Wright slipped it past the keeper, who dove the opposite direction, and evened the match 2-2.
North Dakota took no time at all in overtime as it attacked the Roos net. Mara Yapello cracked a shot inside the 18-yard box that pinged off the post and landed free Kansas City defense. Giddings pounced on the loose ball, dribbled once, and fired into the back of the net to give the Fighting Hawks their first overtime win of the season.
UND and KC will close the series on Sunday, March 28, at 5 p.m. at Bronson Field. The Fighting Hawks soccer program will host Senior Day festivities in postgame.
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