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Coyotes end with tie, miss postseason

The University of South Dakota women’s soccer season drew to a close over the weekend in Vermillion, picking up some much-needed offense in a 3-0 win against Western Illinois Friday and tying Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis 1-1 Saturday.

With Saturday’s tie, the Coyotes finished the 2013 season 6-8-4 after winning three of their first five games.

However, head coach Mandy Green said improvements have been made over last year’s season, when they finished with a 2-13-3 record.

“We were defending better as a team and possessing better as a team this year,” Green said.

The team’s win Friday against Western Illinois was its first Summit League win this season and marked the first game in six weeks that the Coyotes scored a goal.

The Coyotes are tied with Omaha for last place in the Summit League the team

In its eight losses, USD held six opposing teams to one goal, compare that to last year when 10 of their 13 losses it gave up two or more goals.

Regarding offense, Green said that the team needs to improve its ability to score in order to be better next year in the conference.

“Goal scoring is the biggest thing,” Green said. “We’re creating opportunities, but we’re just not finishing.”

The Coyotes had 189 shots this year, which only translated to 27 goals overall.

“We need to definitely start putting away our goals,” sophomore midfielder Elena Tsakakis said.

Despite the Coyotes’ losing season, many of the players, including junior Kaiti Porter, are upbeat and optimistic about the team’s chances next season.

“I feel like this season gave us hope for next year,” said Porter.