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October 19, 2019

9/12/2019 2:23:00 PM
NB breaks out of slump with two five goal performances

North Branch 5, Richfield 1
Junior Paige Bauer scored a hat trick to lead the Vikings to a 5-1 win over the Richfield Spartans Tuesday, September 3 at Richfield High School.  It was the first win of the season for the Vikings

The Spartans popped in a goal in the first minute of the game.  Viking head coach Josh Kopp said “We had just come off a game we should not have lost.  And last year, we were up 2-0 on Richfield at the half and lost 3-2.  So after they scored the first goal, the girls decided it was time to play and hunkered down.”  By midway through the first half, the Vikings took control of the pace of play and started scoring goals.  In addition to Bauer’s hat trick, eighth-grader Ava Gerten scored her first career goal.  Junior Sylvia Linkert also scored for the Vikings  Kopp said “In addition to the scoring, our defensive back line did a great job shutting down any kind of transition play by Richfield.”
Cambridge 5, North Branch 1
The Vikings gave up a goal in the first minute for the second game in a row, and this time they were not able to recover.  The Cambridge-Isanti Bluejackets added four more goals and won 5-1.  Freshman Kayla Allison’s second half goal enabled the Vikings to avoid being shut out for the third time this season.  “Maybe it had something to do with it being the first week in school,” said Viking head coach Josh Kopp, “But I felt like the girls weren’t as focused, that they were a little drained.  We never really got going in this one.  Cambridge’s physical style is a different than what we are used to and they are quick in transition.  We were not able to stop the transition in the middle of the field and the back line struggled.”  The game was played Thursday, September 5 at Cambridge-Isanti High School.

Sophomore Emmie Meyer showed off one of the Vikings’ key offensive weapon.  She took the Viking throw-in from the right sideline deep in the Bluejacket zone.  The ball went right to the foot of Allison in the Cambridge penalty area, and Allison one-touched it into the back of the net.  Kopp said “One of the challenges we talked about at the beginning of the game was that we need to start scoring on set pieces.  We consider it a set piece when Emmie throws the ball in from the sideline in deep in the offensive zone, because she can get the ball that far.”
North Branch 5, Zimmerman 0
“Against Zimmerman,” said Viking head coach Josh Kopp, “the theme of the day was bouncing back from the previous game.  We wanted to put our mindset on the task and opponent at hand.”  And the Vikings did just that.  They scored three goals in the first half, added two more in the second half and silenced the Thunder offense on their way to a 5-0 win.  The game was played Saturday, September 7 at North Branch High School.

Midway through the first half, sophomore Lilly Johnson scored on a through ball by eighth-grader Danna Garcia-Velazquez to put the Vikings up 1-0.  The Vikings added two more goals before halftime, as Sylvia Linkert and Paige Bauer both scored.  Bauer was injured on the play where she scored her goal and had to leave the game.

At halftime, Kopp challenged his players to keep the momentum going and to keep a clean sheet for the keeper and the defensive back line.  The Vikings accomplished both.  Emmie Meyer bounced a throw-in into the Thunder box and Linkert volleyed it in.  Later, Meyer threw another ball into the box.  Johnson trapped it, went around the keeper and scored to make it 5-0.  “The girls did what we asked them to do,” said Kopp.  “Sophomore Paris Kopp and eighth-grader Ava Mohs, along with keeper Emma Mohs, did a great job in the back.  And our eighth-graders are not the biggest, but they can play soccer.”
Soccer Stuff
Senior goalkeeper Emma Mohs is the kicker for the Viking football team, and has booted 40 yard field goals in practice.

Paige Bauer is expected to return soon from her injury.

The Vikings (2-4) will head to Big Lake to buzz the Hornets tonight at 6 p.m.  The Saturday, the Vikings will welcome the Duluth Marshall Hilltoppers to North Branch for a 2 p.m. matinee.  And on Tuesday, September 17, the Vikings will host the Becker Bulldogs in a 6 p.m. matchup.

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