Missouri soccer was outclassed on the pitch in their first home SEC game against University of Georgia on Sunday. Georgia freshman forward Chloe Chapman and junior midfielder Ashley Andersen dominated the game for the Bulldogs, combining for three of the Georgia’s five goals. Missouri senior forward Sarah Luebbert scored its lone goal of the game.
Missouri has now lost two of its first three games of conference play, with the first resulting in a tie against Ole Miss. The Tigers have been outscored by their opponents 9-4 so far in conference play.
Missouri jumped on top early in the game with a shot by sophomore forward Julissa Cisneros that went wide. Cisneros was fed the ball by redshirt sophomore midfielder Zoe Cross who stole the ball from Georgia’s side of the field and sprinted to make the pass to Cisneros in scoring range for the Tigers.
The Tigers’ early attempt on goal was not enough to keep the Bulldogs at bay. In the 18th minute, Georgia scored the first point of the game. Sophomore midfielder Dani Murguia scored her first goal of conference play, assisted by junior forward Katie Ralys who earned her second assist of the season.
The Tigers attempted to respond with a corner kick from junior midfielder Lindsey Whitmore feeding into a shot from senior defender Peyton Joseph that was too high to make contact with the net.
A little over a minute later, Luebbert was the equalizer for the Tigers. In the 20th minute of the match Cross assisted Luebbert in achieving her 6th goal of the season, tying her for fourth in the SEC.
“I just saw Zoe got the ball from Madison Lewis and I just tried to make sure I was onside,” Luebbert said. “She played me a great ball and made it really easy for me to finish.”
Luebbert’s equalizing goal tied her for 8th in all time career goals in Missouri soccer history at 27 goals.
In the following five minutes Georgia turned up the intensity by attempting two shots, one on target, resulting in redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Peyton Bauman’s second save of the match.
Missouri freshman forward Janna Singleton attempted to answer with a shot of her own in the 29th minute but was blocked by Georgia sophomore goalkeeper Emory Wegener.
Within a minute, Andersen scored her first goal of the match, assisted by junior forward Reagan Glisson bringing the Bulldogs ahead 2-1.
Georgia stayed in the lead for the remainder of the first period with only one shot attempt by Missouri.
At the beginning of the second period Missouri tried to make a comeback against Georgia with three shots in the first twenty minutes but was unable to make any of the goals on target due to the physical and aggressive Georgia defense.
Luebbert had another chance to be the equalizer in the game in the 63rd minute when she was given the opportunity to take a penalty kick. The shot was blocked by Wegener.
In the 67th minute Georgia began to dominate Missouri with another goal. Senior midfielder Daria Stan achieved her first goal of the season taking the Bulldogs to a 3-1 lead.
The Bulldogs were relentlessly aggressive and physical in the box and Bauman was subbed out in the 73rd minute for freshman goalkeeper McKenna Sheehan in her first game of college play.
This change in lineup did nothing to slow down Georgia’s offense. The Bulldogs scored twice more by forward Chapman. Chapman’s two goals were achieved within 6 minutes of each other in the 76th and 82nd minutes of the game, bringing Georgia to a dominating 4 point lead over Missouri with just 8 minutes left in the second period.
Missouri’s Sheehan achieved two saves in the final 8 minutes of the period, holding Georgia to a 5-1 win at the end of the game. This totals for 55 saves, putting the Tigers at second highest in the SEC.
“First of all I think Georgia played harder than we did,” coach Bryan Blitz said. “They were more physical, if you look at the fouls they had fourteen fouls to our seven. That’s not always a great recipe to get the win.”
The team plans to keep a short memory of this game but still learn lessons from Georgia.
“They just kind of outworked us,” Luebbert said. “It is frustrating because that’s one thing that we pride ourselves on is outworking the other team so that’s just something we’ll definitely have to work on moving forward.”
Missouri will return to Walton Stadium on Friday, Oct. 4 to take on No. 9 South Carolina at 7 p.m.
Edited by Wilson Moore | firstname.lastname@example.org