The Ferris State University women's soccer team put forth an inspirational performance in its season finale as the Bulldogs held a one-goal lead over nationally third-ranked Grand Valley State with eight minutes remaining but fell 2-1 this Friday (Oct. 30) afternoon in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) contest at Top Taggart Field in Big Rapids, Mich.
Ferris State, which concludes its 2009 season at 3-13-2 overall and 3-10-1 in the conference, scored 19-plus minutes into the match when sophomore forward Bri Borgman (Holland/West Ottawa) gained ball possession from a GVSU player and fired a shot from inside the box on the left side into the upper left corner of the Lakers' net to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead.
Ferris State managed to maintain its lead with solid defense and a little luck in the opening half as Grand Valley State registered an 11-5 shots advantage in the stanza.
The Bulldogs continued to put the clamps on the Lakers in the second half until the 82nd minute when GVSU ended its scoring drought. A corner kick from Erin Mruz to Erin Hilbert was successful as Hilbert outjumped a pair of FSU players for a header goal to knot the match at 1-1 with eight minutes remaining in the contest. The score didn't remain tied for long as a little over two minutes later, Grand Valley State's Maria Brown toed the ball into the near post past senior goalkeeper Kari Alsager (Mount Pleasant) after taking a slotted pass from Ashley Botts with five and one-half minutes to go in the conference regular-season finale.
Heavy rains occurred throughout the second 45 minutes of play as both teams had to endure standing water on the Top Taggart Field turf.
Kari Alsager (2-4-1) was tagged with the loss despite putting in one of her best career performances with an eight-save effort. Chelsea Parise earned the win for Grand Valley State (17-0-2 overall; 13-0-1 GLIAC) by making five saves en route to improving her season mark to 17-0-2.
Grand Valley State compiled a 26-6 lead in the match, which included a one-side 15-1 second-half advantage. The Lakers also held a 7-2 margin in corner kicks.
The match represented the final appearance for four Bulldog seniors - Kari Alsager, defender-goalkeeper Stevie Salow (Saginaw/Hertiage), forward Megan McCabe (Brighton/Pinckney), and defender Ashley Erickson (Walled Lake/Central).