Senior Marissa Mykines owns five goals and two assists for 12 points on the season following the game-winner at Michigan State.
Oct. 8, 2011
EAST LANSING, Mich. - On the road facing the Michigan State Spartans as part of a one-game weekend, Illinois soccer earned a 1-0 victory in double overtime for the ninth win of the season for the Illini. Senior midfielder Marissa Mykines connected for the game-winning goal on a line-drive strike at the 102:36 mark, following a pass from sophomore Vanessa DiBernardo.
"A lot of perseverance, for the more than 100 minutes we played good soccer, knocked the ball around and had chances," said Illinois head coach Janet Rayfield in regards to how the Illini played against the Spartans. "Again, it was one of the games where we were nervous that at any point in time their dangerous duo [Laura Heyboer and Olivia Stander] could make a difference in the game. I'm just happy we finally put one of our chances away."
Each team's defense kept action away from the net throughout the majority of the regulation, with scoreless play a result. The Spartans earned two quality chances during the first half, with the play of goalkeeper Steph Panozzo in net keeping Michigan State (10-4-0 overall, 3-3-0 Big Ten) scoreless. Panozzo blocked a point-blank shot from Olivia Stander in the fifth minute, sending the ball wide of the net before using her fist to push a perfectly placed shot by Katelin Chaklos over the goal nine minutes later.
In overtime, junior midfielder Niki Read nearly ended the game with a header shot at the 97:15 mark, following a cross from senior Julie Ewing. As Read flicked a shot at the left post, Spartans goalkeeper Jill Flietstra dove to her right and blocked the shot out of bounds to end the threat.
After a scoreless first overtime period, the Illini found the back of the net in the 103rd minute to end the contest, with Mykines earning her first game-winning goal of the season in the process. DiBernardo controlled play on the near sideline, crossing the ball into the center of the field as Mykines began a run toward goal. DiBernardo's pass bounced right to Mykines, who dribbled to her right and struck a shot into the left side of the goal netting, near the left post, to end the contest.
"We talked about it when we came in at the end [of regulation] that Marissa needed to play as high as she could, and when they did send numbers forward we could look to see if we could find her over the back," Rayfield said. "We almost had Marissa on the attempt that was called back for offsides earlier in the contest. [In double overtime] Vanessa looked up and saw Marissa coming out of the midfield, so she had plenty of time to get momentum going and not be called for offsides. Vanessa played a great ball, one Marissa could run onto and then all she had to do was put a shot on-frame and out of the reach of Jill Flietstra."
Illinois (9-4-1, 3-2-1) outshot Michigan State, 23-7, during the contest and earned eight corner kicks to the Spartans' two. Illinois also had 11 shots on target, against only three for Michigan State. Flietstra stopped 10 shots for the Spartans in net while Panozzo recorded three saves for Illinois.
The Illini return to action at Illinois Soccer Stadium with a pair of weekend games, including SoccerFest 2011. Illinois hosts Minnesota on Friday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. CT before playing host to Wisconsin during SoccerFest on Sunday, Oct. 16 at 3 p.m. CT. SoccerFest 2011 will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network live as Illinois plays on TV for the second time on the year.