When Minot State University sophomore Emilie Rebelo was tripped up five minutes, 27 seconds into overtime Saturday against Bemidji State University (Minn.), she knew she had a shot to win the game.
Sure, her free kick was from nearly 30 yards out, but Rebelo has a penchant for putting the ball exactly where she wants - whether on long passes or shots from all over the field.
Rebelo blasted the ensuing kick into the top left corner of the goal, giving MSU a 2-1 overtime victory at Herb Parker Stadium and inching the Beavers closer to clinching a home match in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference tournament.
Minot State University freshman forward Gemma Biasetto works in front of two Bemidji State (Minn.) defenders during MSU's 2-1 overtime victory Saturday at Herb Parker Stadium. Biasetto scored in the second half to force the extra period. Photo courtesy of Michael Linnell/MSU sports information.
"As soon as (the foul) happened, I set up and thought, 'This is it. It's gonna happen. It's our goal,' " Rebelo said. "It's a pretty exciting win for us."
MSU Coach Jason Spain said striking accuracy is one of Rebelo's strengths.
"She's definitely the best passer on our team," Spain said. "She takes almost all of our free kicks ... She's beat the wall a few times. Against Wayne State, she beat the wall and the goalie just got a fingertip on it, so she's been pretty dang dangerous on those kicks."
BSU (9-5-1 overall, 7-4-1 NSIC) entered the match one notch below fourth-place MSU (11-3-1, 9-3) in the conference standings. With three games remaining, Minot State is in solid position to be one of four teams to host a first-round playoff game.
"It gives us more than a game advantage, plus tiebreakers," Spain said. "We're extremely close now to clinching a home playoff game, which has been the goal."
Bemidji's Jessie Voeller scored 15:14 into the game when MSU senior goalkeeper Marie Torres failed to haul in a corner kick. Torres had her hands on the ball, but dropped it after being bumped, allowing Voeller to put the loose ball into the back of the net.
MSU created a few promising opportunities early in the second half and finally scored in the 58th minute.
Sophomore forward Zoe Fisher ran down the right sideline and played a rolling cross to freshman Gemma Biasetto. BSU goalie Sonja Barr hesitated in gathering the ball and Biasetto found the net for her second score of the year.
BSU coach Jim Stone said his team could have won in regulation if not for the defensive breakdown.
"It was a little disappointing because that first goal we let in was extremely soft," Stone said. "It was miscommunication between our goalkeeper and our back, so we shouldn't have found ourselves in overtime. When you do that against good teams, they'll punish you for it."
Torres finished with three saves and Barr had 10.
MSU hosts the University of Minnesota, Crookston at 2 p.m. today.