The Maneater

Duo of Missouri’s defense ranks third nationally in minutes played

Juniors Anna Frick and Peyton Joseph are the sole Tigers to have played all of this season’s 5 matches, including four overtime contests.

Defender Anna Frick is introduced before a matchup against the Northwestern Wildcats at Audrey J. Walton stadium on August 30, 2018.

Due in large part to Missouri soccer playing four overtime matches this season, junior defenders Anna Frick and Peyton Joseph are tied for third nationally in average minutes per game played, clocking in at 98.4 per contest. The pair is only outranked by three other players in the nation, each with a 100 minute per game average.

This is not unusual for the pair of Tiger defenders. During the 2016 season, Frick led the team as a freshman in minutes played logging 1,756 minutes across 19 games at center back. Missing two games during the 2017 season due to injury, she ended up coming in second behind Joseph, who had 1,678 minutes across 21 games.

Frick and Joseph have been huge factors on the Tiger defense, arguably the team’s biggest strength so far this season. Although the team may currently hold a losing record, defensively MU has only allowed four goals in its four overtime contests this season. One came during the second half of regulation against Iowa, the same game that’s seen the only Tiger goal of the season by freshman Skye Kingsley. The other three were the game winning overtime goals from Iowa, Northwestern, and Texas Christian University.

When asked if they’ve gotten tired of extra play yet this season, Frick and Joseph both laughed. This was after Sunday night’s matchup with TCU, the second home overtime loss this season that saw Missouri keep the game scoreless during regulation.

“Defensively, we’ve put a lot of work in,” Frick said. “It’s been working for us, but we just have to get through overtime.”

This is the first time in the program’s 23 year history that four out of the first five games of the season have gone into overtime.

Coach Bryan Blitz praised the Tigers’ back line as well. “Our whole team defense has been great,” he said after Sunday night’s loss against TCU. Missouri is one of only three teams so far this season to hold the Horned Frogs to only one goal.

Goalkeeper Kelsey Dossey has also been a big factor on Missouri’s defense this season. In 366 minutes of gameplay the senior has logged 16 saves, which has her tied for 51st nationally.

The Tigers face the top-10 ranked USC Trojans Friday on the road before returning home to face Gonzaga on Sunday in the their first ever matchup against the Washington school. Against USC, Missouri is 0-2, having played them most recently last season at home.

Gonzaga, although a new opponent, is currently 2-1-1 and familiar with the overtime hustle, having its last two matches see double overtime.

Edited by Adam Cole | acole@themaneater.com

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