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Huskies soccer is on a heater

soccer, blooming prairie, new prague
Owatonna midfielder Kennedy Schammel makes a move against a new Prague defender. Schammel and the Huskies have been on a four-game winning streak since starting the season 0-3. Staff photo by Johnnie Phillips
Johnnie Phillips, Sports Editor

Owatonna’s girls soccer team has been on fire as of late, stretching its winning streak to four games after dismantling both Austin and New Prague last week.

The Huskies have been perfect since starting the season 0-3, and Owatonna Head Coach Nate Gendron says he knows what has contributed to the sudden success.

“After the first three games, we weren’t connected. After the 6-0 loss to Prior Lake, there were some tears and it was a bit of a wake-up call. So after that, we changed our formation completely. We moved some players around and we really came together as a team,” said Gendron.’

Owatonna’s most notable change in its formation is that senior captain Ezra Oien has moved back to the center of the midfield after a short stint at playing on the wing.

Gendron said the move was necessary due to Oien’s ability to win “50-50 balls in the air” while also giving her control of the offense from the center of the field.

“I think it just feels better being back in the center. Being able to control the ball and distribute, while also being able to see more of the field just feels great,” said Oien.

Owatonna capped its week with a 2-0 win over New Prague last week behind goals from Oien and Lauren Waypa.

Waypa opened the scoring late in the first half after receiving a pass from Oien and taking a shot from just outside the penalty box that beat the Trojans' goalkeeper into the top left corner of the net.

Waypa’s shot came with 5:55 remaining in the half, and sent the Huskies into halftime with a 1-0 lead.

Both teams struggled to high-percentage scoring chances in the second half, but it was Oien who managed to find the net with 1:14 remaining in the game after a successful header from a corner kick beat New Prague’s goalkeeper.

Assisting Oien on the goal was senior midfielder Abby Vetsch.

Earlier in the week, Owatonna beat the Austin Packers in a one-sided game that featured four different goal scorers for the Huskies.

Scoring for Owatonna in the match were Oien and Aleah Anderson with two goals apiece, while Kennedy Schammel and Ava Stanchina also found the back of the net as well.

Up next for Owatonna is an away game against Winona on Thursday at 7 p.m.

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