Mounds View girls soccer strong again

Two years ago the Mounds View High School girls soccer team completed an undefeated regular season and advanced to the state tournament. That team was unbelievably stingy defensively as it surrendered only seven goals in 19 games.

Seven players from that 2013 team are now seniors on this year's team that entered play this week unbeaten. Head coach Terri Patraw said she hasn't been asked to compare the two teams much yet but sees similarities and a few differences.

"I probably compare them more than anybody," said Patraw, a Mounds View alumna who is in her third year as coach. "This team is really talented. We'll compare favorably with that team for sure."

This year's team might have a bit more experience than the 2013 squad. Eight seniors start this season compared to only four two years ago.

Offensively, the 2015 team seems to be more explosive. Mounds View has scored five or more goals in a game five times already while the 2013 team did that only four times all season.

"This one is super potent offensively," Patraw said. "Mariah Northrop and Rachel Boyer can score goals like crazy."

Northrop also sets up plenty of goals as evidenced by the school record she set earlier this season. She is now the program's leader in all-time assists with 41. She established the record with three helpers in Mounds View's 6-1 victory over Rogers on Sept. 4.

"She's extremely talented and very unselfish," Patraw said of Northrop. "She's just a special talent. That's something to brag about."

The previous record was 40 held by 2009 Mounds View graduate Allie Phillips, who went on to play four years of college soccer at the University of Minnesota.

Defensively, the 2013 team might have the advantage based on goals given up. This year's team has already surrendered five goals, which might be more of a result of sometimes playing a bit too loose in its own end.

"We can be casual," said Patraw. "We've given up an early goal against Rogers and an early goal against Mahtomedi. I think some of it's coming out a little too relaxed."

Patraw has a simple remedy for that, however.

"We have a lot of depth so they know if they're not going to play I’ll put someone else in," Patraw said.

Mounds View improved its record to 7-0-1 with a pair of shutout victories last week. The Mustangs thumped Roseville 9-0 and beat Maple Grove 3-0 but still dropped a spot in the state coaches poll that was released on Sunday. They went from No. 2 to No. 3 and were leapfrogged by Lakeville North, which beat Burnsville last week.

Lakeville North and Burnsville had been tied for third in the previous week's poll. Eagan is the undisputed No. 1 team in the state in Class AA, thanks to an unbeaten record and a victory over Lakeville North. Mounds View's only game against a ranked Class AA team thus far was a 1-1 tie against Burnsville on Sept. 1.

Mounds View has three games on the docket this week, including a showdown for first place in the Suburban East Conference on Tuesday. The Mustangs, 2-0 in the Suburban East, travel to East Ridge, which is 2-0-1 in conference.

Mounds View then plays at Cretin-Derham Hall on Thursday and hosts Spring Lake Park/St. Anthony Village on Saturday.

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com or 651-748-7819. Follow him on Twitter @BMeyersNews.

 

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