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Tom Mix, Published April 30 2013

West Fargo, Shanley play to scoreless draw

FARGO – Outdoor soccer made a triumphant return to the Red River Valley on Tuesday.

After experiencing a month full of postponements and cancellations due to unseasonable weather, area North Dakota girls soccer teams finally took to the pitch for the first time.

All eight teams from the Eastern Dakota Conference were in action on Tuesday with two of the games played at Sid Cichy Stadium. Fargo South defeated Devils Lake 3-0 and defending state champions Fargo Shanley tied with West Fargo 0-0.

Though the Deacons didn’t post a win in the opener, senior defender Carly Mickelson was just happy to be on a field playing a match.

“It is a relief to finally put what we have been working on all year out in a bigger space,” Mickelson said. “It was nice to see everyone connecting.”

The long delay creates an abbreviated regular season, in which each EDC team will play each other once. The point structure of three points for a win and one point for a tie remains the same.

What is new this season is an EDC tournament which is set for May 23-25. The tournament will provide three additional matches for all eight EDC teams and will determine which four teams represent the East at the state tournament, set for May 30-June 1 at Sid Cichy Stadium.

Prior to this season, state tournament berths were determined by final regular-season standings.

“I have mixed emotions about the tournament,” Shanley head coach Kevin Roos said. “I wished it was a little more spread out, but with only playing seven games in the regular season, it is obviously great for the girls to play in more games.”

After the seven-game regular season, teams will be seeded one through eight based on final points. Four quarterfinals games will be played at the higher seed’s home field the first day. Semifinals and consolations semifinals played on the second day will be split at West Fargo’s Loeden Center and Sid Cichy Stadium.

The final day of the tournament will be two state-qualifying matches and a championship match all played at Sid Cichy Stadium.

“I like it for this season,” Fargo South head coach Michael Breker said of the EDC tournament. “It makes sense. It gets us more games, but I wish it was a Tuesday-Thursday-Friday format rather than Thursday-Friday-Saturday. That would be more ideal because it saves the kids’ legs.”

Shanley dominated possession the entire match on Tuesday, but was unable to put a ball past West Fargo senior goalkeeper Amy Archibald, who posted 22 saves.

“We battled and we definitely possessed the ball,” Roos said. “We had plenty of chances, but we couldn’t find the back of the net.”

West Fargo head coach James Moe was pleased with the tie.

“Shanley is a great team,” Moe said. “We did enough tonight to get a good result.”

FIRST HALF: No scoring.

SECOND HALF: No scoring.

SAVES: WF, Archibald 22. S, Zaeske 2.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Tom Mix at (701) 241-5562