The Show Goes On
On a night when LSU needed its best, it brought it. Dare greatly was the message to the team in the pregame. LSU was on a mission, and they weren’t going to be denied a spot in Orange Beach.
Don’t mind the daunting task of beating the fourth ranked Arkansas Razorbacks who were on a 14 match win streak. Don’t mind LSU conceding 138 seconds into the match; the Tigers didn’t blink. This team’s confidence and grit never wavered.
“It was a spirited match from our team,” head coach Sian Hudson said. “It was a great effort from us to come-from-behind after the first goal and I can’t tell you enough of how proud I am of the players. They played a fantastic game tonight, and this is a huge confidence boost heading into the SEC Tournament.”
Four LSU goals later and it was a sight to see for the Purple and Gold faithful at LSU Soccer Stadium. This is a team who plays their best when they’re the underdogs. A school record four ranked wins in a season; not to mention the highest ranked victory in school history over No. 4 Arkansas on Thursday night as the Tigers had their backs up against the wall in a must win scenario.
Ten wonderful seniors recognized pregame. Spikes laced up in what could have been their last time playing organized soccer. They brought the energy and impacted the game heavily. On their night of celebration the senior class played a direct part in all four goals.
Tinaya Alexander had five points on the night to lead the charge. Alexander assisted on Cooke’s header in the 18th minute off a free kick to help LSU equalize things. Grad transfer Athena Kuehn and senior Molly Thompson picked up assists on Rammie Noel’s goal that gave LSU the lead for good.
The rest was the Alexander’s doing. She scored right out of half with her left foot to give the Tigers a two-goal advantage, and she put the cherry on top of the whole night with a goal with 10 seconds left on the clock to do Arkansas in for good. The Tigers wound up putting four goals on the board for the second time in three matches. Is the offense starting to click again? Some might say so.
“So proud of this group, I love them,” Alexander said after the match. “I’m excited to get back on the scoresheet and help this team in any way I can. We just brought a great amount of pride for one another to the field tonight and it showed.”
This is a team that is dangerous. They’ve played exceptional soccer at times this season; when the Tigers are firing on all cylinders, watch out. This team knows what they are capable of.
The journey will continue this weekend in Orange Beach, Alabama, as the Tigers have earned the No. 9 seed in the SEC Tournament. A chance for a little bit of revenge will be on the docket for LSU Sunday afternoon as they take on the eighth seeded Georgia Bulldogs on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. CT on the SEC Network.