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Womenʼs soccer team poised for playoffs

October 21, 2011

“When grit meets grace, and power embraces passion,” is what senior captain Eryn Lansverk prefers to say to define the success of the Falcon women’s soccer team so far this year.

In the first month of their season, the Falcons played a total of 10 games. Although eight of those games were losses, seven of them were lost by one goal, including an overtime loss to St. Norbert.

“We’ve played one of the toughest schedules in the midwest this season. We’re a good team but we’re not getting the results we need,” said Head Coach Sean McKuras.

Since the Falcon’s last game in September, they have played six games total, winning four of them. Coach McKuras said that this is the most talented group of girls he’s ever had and he can expect them to win every game.

“We started putting the ball in the net and scoring first,” said McKuras.

With the rough start to their season, Lansverk said it has given opportunities to each player. “Facing adversity has provided various teammates opportunities to step up and contribute as leaders and bring us together as a whole, playing for each other rather than just ourselves,” said Lansverk.

Lansverk has definitely stepped up herself. The senior forward from White Bear Lake, Minn. pumped in three goals in their game against Ripon College and two against UW-Stevens Point. Not counting this current year, Lansverk has racked up a total of 27 goals. This season she has a total of eight goals thus far making her “One of the highest scoring players in UW-River Falls history,” said McKuras. On Oct. 4, Lansverk was also named the WIAC Offensive Soccer Player of the Week.

“As a player, getting daily touches on the ball this summer helped to prepare me for the preseason, as well as working hard everyday at practice, and trying to improve my individual play as well as my teammates,” said Lansverk.

“Eryn is fun to watch and people want to play like her,” said McKuras.

Lansverk agrees that this year’s group of girls is one of the most advanced teams that the Falcon women’s soccer program has ever seen.

“In my fourth and final year playing for UWRF, I would argue that this is one of the most talented and skilled teams to ever have passed through the Falcon soccer program. Knowing that, I think as a team we can expect and should demand of ourselves to have a strong finish in our regular season games and to be playing in the championship game of the WIAC,” said Lansverk.

The next game is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 19 facing UW-Whitewater. The game against UW-Whitewater is the Falcons’ last home game as well as, “Playing for a Cure-Pancreatic Cancer.”

“In the preseason a player’s mom was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, so we’re doing this to show our support” said McKuras. The Falcons will be wearing different colored jerseys to show support for the cause and then they will be auctioned off after the game to raise money.

The Falcons are currently tied with UW-Stevens Point for sixth place in the conference. If the Falcons win on Saturday, UW-Stevens Point won’t make it into the playoffs for the first time ever.

“We’ve been working hard, taking it one game at a time, and tightening up our play as we go. It’s a learning curve and we’re getting better every game,” said Lansverk.