Pope's Magic Moment Lifts Kentucky Past UTSA
Sept. 13, 2013
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Junior Stuart Pope scored her team-high sixth in the 62nd minute to lift Kentucky to its fifth-straight win, as the Wildcats outlasted the University of Texas at San Antonio RoadRunners, 1-0 on Friday night at the UK Soccer Complex.
"UTSA was a very tough team," UK associate head coach Michelle Rayner said. "In the first half, we didn't quite get enough out of the team as far as what we were looking for in game management and how we were trying to break them down. We were not doing what we needed to do in the final third. We had a chat about that at halftime, fixed some things, got the ball out wide and I think we succeeded with that in the second half."
Kentucky dominated possession and shots all night long, only allowing UTSA to record six shots in the game, with all six tallies coming in the first frame. The RoadRunners were able to muscle out two second-half corner kicks to push their game total to three corners in the match.
Kentucky outshot UTSA 8-6 in the first half, before stepping up in the second half to claim 14 shots, with eight of them being on goal.
The UK goal came from Pope in the 62nd minute as she was on the receiving end of an Arin Gilliland service ball that came from the left flank. Gilliland got the ball from the midfield and snatched open space on the left of the penalty area before serving a ball across the face of goal, which was headed in by Pope, who was to the far side of the keeper.
The goal for Pope was her team-high sixth of the season, and her sixth goal in the past five matches. She now leads the team in points with 14.
Kentucky has now won a season-high five-consecutive games, all while outscoring their opponents 15-2 in those five games.
King kept a clean sheet for the third time this season, as she has now only allowed two goals in the past 670 minutes on the pitch.
"Kayla is a rock star back there," Rayner said. `She leads our back line, she is very talkative, communicative, and really helps organize us in the back. Every game is a learning experience with this back line and I think they got better in some areas. Every game is a plus and they are only going to get better."
Kentucky will next travel to Morgantown, W. Va., to face the No. 19/10 West Virginia Mountaineers on Sunday afternoon. Kickoff is slated for 1:00 p.m. ET at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium.
For continuing coverage of UK women's soccer, log on to UKathletics.com.