Packer girls can’t keep pace with Scarlets

Published 9:17 pm Thursday, September 13, 2018

The Austin girls soccer team faced plenty of shots against Mankato West and the Packers leaned on both of their goal keepers to keep them close as they lost to the Scarlets 5-0 in Art Has Stadium Thursday.

Senior Cassity Nangle stopped eight of the 10 shots she saw in the first half, including a tremendous save on a point-blank line drive, and junior Robin Weaver stopped 10 of the 13 shots she saw, including a heads up save, where she dove near the post to make a stop after she bobbled the initial shot. Both keepers have shared duties in net throughout the the season for Austin (0-5 overall, 0-5 Big Nine) and they’ve worked off each other to get better.

Austin’s Erin Bickler steps up on Mankato West’s Rachel Luedtke during the first half Thursday night at Art Hass Stadium. Eric Johnson/

“We’ve played together since we both started high school soccer,” Weaver said. “We’ve worked together and we’ve always been on the same team. We push each other to our limits to the put where we hate each other sometimes, but it’s all for the better.”

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Nangle described her relationship with Weaver as a love-hate sisterly one and she said Weaver has been very effective in helping her out this season. Nangle was pleased with how well Austin played against the Scarlets (6-1 overall, 5-0 Big Nine), who are perennial contenders in the Big Nine.

Austin’s Salma Masood advances the ball under pressure against Mankato West Thursday night at Art Hass Stadium. Eric Johnson/

“In the past couple of years we’ve been annihilated by West, to put it frankly,” Nangle said. “This year we looked at years past and what Jake’s trying to push and we really put it together. To lose 5-0 is amazing for us against West and I think we’re really pushing ourselves to do better against state-bound teams.”

Austin had just two shots in the loss, but the Packers kept the Scarlets from getting a lot of easy looks. Austin head coach Jake Levisen said he likes what his team is doing with communication on defense and he likes what both of his keepers are giving him.

Austin’s Grace Mayer keeps her eye on the ball as she works to move the ball forward against Mankato West Thursday night at Art Hass Stadium. Eric Johnson/

“I’m very impressed by our defensive effort in this game. Our D worked well together and they’re talking to each other and looking for opportunities to work the ball up the field,” Levisen said. “I really like using them both keepers. They’re doing a great job in practice of not only supporting each other, but helping each other get better. I think it shows in the game.”

Weaver said she continues to learn more each game and she thinks the West game will help her get even better.

Austin’s Eliana Bentley steps up to challenge Mankato West’s Malia Neumann in the first half Thursday night at Art Hass Stadium. Eric Johnson/

“Playing the actual position of goalie is just a part of it,” Weaver said. “If you can communicate to your defense, you can stop so many balls before they get to you. You have to make sure you’re communicating with your defense. Playing against West, I learned a lot and I’m going to go watch the film, I’ll be taking some notes on it and I’ll be pushing myself to the max to get better from this game.”

Austin’s Hannah Quandt heads the ball forward during the first half Thursday against Mankato West. Eric Johnson/