Texas A&M's Corner Kick Enough to Win SEC Title over UK
ORANGE BEACH, Ala. – A goal in the 30th minute from Southeastern Conference Offensive Player of the Year Shea Groom off of a corner kick turned out to be the deciding goal in the 2014 SEC Tournament Championship match on Sunday afternoon, as the No. 7 and top-seeded Texas A&M Aggies defeated the No. 17 University of Kentucky women’s soccer to claim the tournament title.
“First off, congratulations to G (Guerrieri) and Texas A&M.” UK head coach Jon Lipsitz said. “They were the best team in the league this season and deserved champions. We played well enough to win today and we created enough chances to win the game, but Texas A&M and Jordan Day’s special performance kept us out of the net. I came into today’s game wondering how we would respond to three games in five days, and I loved the fight of our team. I have a lot of confidence in this team moving forward and can’t wait to watch the NCAA Tournament Selection Show tomorrow with the team.”
The Wildcats were appearing in the SEC Tournament final for the first time since 2006, and only the third time in program history on Sunday afternoon. UK finishes the regular season with a 15-6-0 record, as winners of eight of the last nine matches, with Sunday’s defeat coming as UK’s first since losing to the same Texas A&M Aggies back on Oct. 4 in College Station.
UK will learn its path to the 2014 NCAA Women’s College Cup in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., on Monday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. ET during the NCAA Women’s Soccer Selection Show. The show will be aired live online at NCAASports.com.
Kentucky had a handful of chances to equalize in the match, but Texas A&M goalkeeper Jordan Day made six saves on the afternoon, including a diving kick save on Kentucky’s best scoring opportunity in the early portions of the second half.
UK outshot the Aggies 13-10 on the afternoon, with six of the Wildcats’ shots coming on frame. Kelli Hubly had three of those five shots on goal, with Swift tallying two, and Kaitlin Miller charting one.
With the win for Texas A&M, the Aggies moved up two spots, jumping Stanford and reigning national champion, UCLA for the top spot in the nation’s RPI. Kentucky right now is slotted at No. 18 in the national computer rankings and will be among the contenders for a top-16 national seed. Kentucky has wins on its resume over (9) Florida and (10) South Carolina, as well as five wins over the top-50 in the current RPI.
Kentucky had a number of good scoring opportunities throughout the match, but were unable to hammer home anything past Texas A&M goalkeeper Jordan Day.
For continuing coverage of UK women’s soccer, log on to UKathletics.com.