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Blazers And Rebels Split Points In Passionate Scoreless Women's Soccer Draw

Women's Soccer kicked off their 2017 MCAC campaign on Sunday evening with a difficult Week 1 match-up with last season's Championship Runner's Up; Red River Rebels. Despite the goalless scoreline the match didn't disappoint the spectators with it's level of excitment.

The first big chance of the match came early when Esther Schwarzkopf led Camille Plett in behind the Red River defense and the debutant slid a pass in to the right boot of Janelle Wride only to have her attempt blocked en route to goal.

2016 MCAC Golden Boot winner Julia Friesen nearly capitalized for the Rebels to put the away team ahead in the 20th minute, but the pacey winger's opportunity was denied by a rushing Lydia Balsillie who timed her challenge to perfection, keeping the match scoreless.

After the re-start, Rebels midfielder Emma McLennan rushed through the CMU back four in the 56th minute but her effort from inside the box missed wide right of Ballsillie's goal. The play immediately shifted to the Red River 18-yard box where Schwarzkopf's left-footed attempt clattered into the side netting.

As the sun set and legs tired, keeping up with Friesen became more and more of a challenge for CMU. In the 62nd minute, the striker won a foot race with midfielder Naomi Klassen but failed to find her finish as Balsillie closed her down. 

CMU had late chances to score, the best coming from Mackenzie Friesen but her shot from distance was parried away by goalkeeper Amanda Wilton for a Blazers corner kick in the 78th minute. Then Plett dribbled into the box after a tidy passing sequence from Marijka Yaschyshyn, Klassen and Schwarzkopf only to see the last defender poke the potential game-winner off her foot.

It took the Blazers until October to take their first point from the 2016 season, so expect Sunday's draw to be a satisfictory start to the new campaign. CMU is in home action on Friday night as they host Brandon's ACC Cougars at the Ralph Cantafio Soccer Complex at 6:00pm. The men will challenge the Cougars immediately after, at 8:15pm.



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