Landis, Hunyadi Each Net Two in Soccer's 4-1 Win at Alabama
Sept. 25, 2011
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The University of Kentucky women's soccer team (8-2-0, 1-1-0 SEC) defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide (6-3-1, 1-1-0) by a score of 4-1 to claim their first Southeastern Conference win of the season, on the heels of a two-goal game from Kelsey Hunyadi and Caitlin Landis at the Alabama Soccer Complex in Tuscaloosa, Ala. on Sunday afternoon.
"Any points on the road in the SEC are a bonus," UK head coach Jon Lipsitz said. "The key of salvaging a split and getting these three points today was absolutely critical to our season-long goals."
With the score knotted at 0-0, Kentucky struck at the beginning of the second half when Kelsey Hunyadi connected from 25 yards from goal on a bullet that went into the upper 90. The service was from Danielle Krohn who placed a ball perfectly at the feet of Hunyadi, who laced it into the back of the net. The goal came in the 48th minute for the Cats, making it the seventh time in 10 games this season that UK has scored first.
There were 10 cautions and ejections in the game. Alabama freshman forward Jenea Simpson was booked in the 66th minute making it 11 v 10 at the time. The ejection was the first of three red cards given to Alabama throughout the course of the game.
The second red card was issued to the Alabama starting goalkeeper, Justine Bernier, who was sent off in the 61st minute. The foul that carded her in the box gave UK the opportunity for a penalty kick.
Kelsey Hunyadi converted the penalty kick that resulted from the foul, and put UK up 2-0 in the 61st. The shot was perfectly placed in the bottom left corner of the net, and the Cats would not look back. The penalty kick was Hunyadi's third PK converted in as many tries this season.
The UK defense committed a foul in the box in the 83rd minute, giving Alabama the opportunity to get back in the game with a penalty kick. Theresa Diederich converted on the PK for Alabama, and cut the UK lead to 2-1.
Kentucky sophomore forward Caitlin Landis put the game away in the 85th minute when she buried a ball into the back of the net off a beautiful pass from Hunyadi, extending UK's lead to 3-1. The goal was Landis' second on the year.
The assist by Hunyadi, along with her two goals, gave her five points for the game overall. The five points tallied by Hunyadi tied her career high that she set on October 29, 2010 against Vanderbilt.
"You could see it in Kelsey's focus not just today, but yesterday that she was ready for this game," Lipsitz said.
Landis put the game on ice in the closing minutes with a beautiful dribbling display, shredding the shorthanded Alabama defense and scoring in the 88th minute. The goal marked the first time that Landis has scored multiple goals in a game as well as the first time she has tallied more than two points in a single game in her career. Landis also recorded a career-high seven shots in the game. The goal made it 4-1, which held on to be the final.
Kentucky was able to compose themselves in the final minutes of the game when UK had the 11 v 9 edge in players with the two red cards to the Alabama players. The Wildcats were able to possess the ball as well as dictate the speed of play in leading to the win.
"We are on the road in the SEC with a small roster," Lipsitz said. "We thought it was important to get everyone involved. We felt like if we could survive the first half and have everyone rested for the second half, that we would be able to win the game."
Kayla Price was remarkable between the pipes for UK, recording a season-high 10 saves.
Kentucky recorded a season-high 22 shots in the game, as well as posting a season-high four goals. The last time Kentucky scored four or more goals was October 29, 2010 against Vanderbilt.
Over nine players recorded a shot in the game, including four players who recorded multiple shots.
With the win, UK improves to 10-4-1 all-time against the Crimson Tide. The win snapped a winless streak for UK in Tuscaloosa, Ala. that dated back to 2003. Kentucky had been 0-2-1 in the previous three games at the Alabama Soccer Complex.
Kentucky will end their five-game road trip next week when they will travel to play South Carolina and Florida. The Sunday afternoon tilt against Florida will be broadcast on CSS with a 2:00 p.m. EST kick-off.