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Bemidji St. soccer team battles No. 6 Mankato in overtime loss

Bemidji State's Tiffany VanHaaften (17) and Minnesota State, Mankato's Jacque Ackerman battle for the ball during Saturday's game at BSU Soccer Field. The No. 6 ranked Mavericks won 1-0 in overtime. BSU hosts Southwest State on Sunday at 1 p.m. at BSU Soccer Field. BSU Photo Services

The Bemidji State soccer team lost to No. 6 Minnesota State 1-0 in overtime in a thriller of a game Saturday afternoon at BSU Soccer Field.

The game was the NSIC opener for both teams. BSU (4-2) wraps up weekend play at BSU Soccer Field against Minnesota-Crookston Sunday at 1 p.m.

"When you play that well and that collectively it's tough not to come away with a point, but we have to move on, put it past us, and get ready for tomorrow," Bemidji State head coach Jim Stone said.

Minnesota State's Laura Leber scored the game-winning goal when she broke past the Bemidji State defense and put the ball in the bottom-left corner in the 98th minute.

Bemidji State was out shot 21-7, but goalkeeper Samantha Ross made eight saves in regulation to keep the game scoreless, including a great diving save in the 71st minute.

Ross also broke a team record with 523:07 minutes played without conceding a goal. Kari Torgerson set the previous mark of 429:03 back in 2004.

"Kari had a pretty big shadow and was a great goalie, so it's good for Ross to put her own stamp on the program," Stone said. "Someday, some keeper will have to get out of the shadow that Ross is creating today."

The old record almost stayed intact when in the fifth minute Leber rolled a ball past Ross, but BSU defender Maddie Pletta slid in to make the save allowing Ross to become the new record holder.

"I was nervous for the first bit, especially when they almost scored there in the beginning, but fortunately Pletta made a great play and kept the ball out," Ross said. "I actually didn't know about the record until we lined up for the start of the game."

BSU had some quality opportunities on offense during the game, but were only able to get one shot on goal. The Beavers tried playing the through ball all game, but the stingy Maverick defense was able to stop most of the BSU attacks.

Bemidji State had two chances at the end of the game to win it. The first came in the 88th minute when Ashlee Ellefsen broke past the Maverick defensive line, but her shot went right into the arms of MSU keeper Shelia Reynold. The second chance came in the 98th minute when Yesenia Garcia took a shot off the volley from the top of the 18-yard box. Her shot sailed just over the net..