UK Soccer Claims 1-0 Upset of No. 13 LSU
Oct. 9, 2009
LEXINGTON, KY - The UK women's soccer defense put the clamps on one of the highest scoring offenses in the country, collecting a 1-0 shutout victory over the 13th ranked (NSCAA) LSU Tigers (8-3-2, 4-1-0 SEC).
Amid sloppy field conditions from several days worth of rain in the Lexington area, the Wildcats (4-6-3, 1-4-0) recorded their first win over a ranked team since downing the 12th ranked Florida Gators in the 2006 SEC Tournament championship.
Giuleana Lopez scored the game-winner with 1:26 left in the first half off a perfectly executed corner kick. Stefani Kildare took the corner and put the ball towards the front of the goal where Lopez rose above the crowd and pushed a header towards the back post past LSU goalie Mo Isom. It was Lopez's third goal of the season and her second game-winner this year.
"It's great to get our first SEC win, especially over an extremely talented LSU team in very tough conditions," said UK assistant coach Michelle Rayner. "Coach Lipsitz would be the first to say that our biggest game plan would be to battle and fight, and for 90 minutes we did that.
"We had to play little more direct tonight than we would have liked to just because of the conditions. I thought our forward line did a good job of holding the ball for us, thus creating the attacks that we did. Our services into the box weren't great, obviously an area we still need to work on, but we've done a lot of work going to goal this past week."
LSU entered the match ranked 19th in the country in offense and averaging four goals per SEC contest. However, when all was said and done the Kentucky defense and UK goalie Sydney Hiance recorded their sixth shutout of the season and first in league play.
For Hiance it was her 14th career clean sheet and the fifth in her SEC career. She entered the match ranking 44th nationally in goals-against-average, which dropped to 0.65.
The Wildcats had an opportunity midway through the first half to take a 1-0 lead off a LSU foul. Kelly Browning took the free kick from about 30 yards out and tried to chip it into Katie Fahey who was charging the net. However, the ball skidded off the wet ground right into the hands of Isom.
Kentucky had a chance at an insurance goal 20 minutes into the second half when Lopez found Laura Novikoff through the LSU defense. Novikoff fired a shot from 15 yards out, but it went wide right of the goal.
The Wildcats took one more shot at an insurance goal in the 84th minute off a punt from Hiance. The UK goalie sent a long ball that bounced over the LSU defense to Fahey. Fahey controlled the ball, took a couple dribbles towards the goal and launched a shot that Isom dove and knocked out of the way.
Novikoff led the UK offense with two shots, while Fahey and Lopez had the lone shots on goal for the Cats.
The Wildcats look to continue their momentum on Sunday, when they host the Arkansas Razorbacks. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. at the UK Soccer Complex. The first 300 UK students (must show valid UK student ID) through the gate will receive a "MEMBER OF THE BIG BLUE NATION" wristband which will admit them to the student only men's basketball practice. Admission is free for UK students.