Soccer Set To Open SEC Tournament Versus Georgia
Baton Rouge, La. – The LSU soccer team, who clinched their spot in the 2021 SEC Tournament with a win over No. 4 Arkansas on Thursday night, will open up play at the SEC Tournament in Orange Beach, Alabama, on Sunday afternoon versus Georgia. First kick at the Orange Beach Sportsplex will be schedule for 3:30 p.m. CT and the game will air live on the SEC Network.
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LSU at the SEC Tournament
Sunday’s match versus Georgia will represent LSU’s 16th appearance at the SEC Tournament. The Tigers are 11-11-6 in their 28 matches at the SEC Tournament. This will be the first time that LSU and Georgia have met at the SEC Tournament. In LSU’s last 10 matches at the SEC Tournament dating back to 2015, the Tigers are 6-2-2. Both of those two draws have also seen LSU advance via penalty kicks.
In 2018, LSU earned four results in eight days to claim the program’s first ever SEC Tournament title. LSU was the first team to win the SEC title after playing in the opening round since the tournament expanded in 2018. The Tigers battled Arkansas to a 1-1 draw after 110 minutes of play and beat them in penalties, 4-1, for the SEC title.
LSU’s 4-0 win over Arkansas gave the Tigers 12 points for the conference season and earned them the No. 9 seed. Georgia was awarded with the No. 8 seed after accumulating 14 points during conference play. Teams ranked 7-10 play in the opening round on Sunday; the other matchup will feature No. 7 Vanderbilt and No. 10 Florida. The winner of the LSU/Georgia match will face off with the SEC regular season champions, Arkansas, at 5 p.m. CT on Tuesday. LSU went 4-6-0 in SEC play with victories over Mississippi State, Kentucky, South Carolina, and No. 4 Arkansas to earn its spot in Orange Beach.
Georgia has won 11 times, and LSU has seven victories. There have also been three draws between the two schools. The Tigers will be looking for a little bit of revenge as the Bulldogs prevailed earlier this season with a 2-1 overtime victory in Baton Rouge.
Rammie Noel scored the lone goal for the Tigers in that match to equalize things in the 29th minute. Georgia’s Mollie Belisle scored the game winner in the 100th minute. Visit lsusports.net for a full recap of that match.
Tinaya Alexander has scored nine goals to go along with five assists for a point total of 23 through 17 games this season. She has 21 career goals and 21 career assists for a point total of 63. Her 21 career assists are the third most in program history at LSU and she now has the 10th most points (63) in LSU history. She’s coming off a career year in which she had career highs in goals scored (9) and points (21) in 2020-21.
Alexander was named the SEC Offensive Player of the Week on October 29 after her two goal, one assist performance against No. 4 Arkansas. Both her goals came in the second half, and she assisted on Shannon Cooke’s header off a free kick in the 18th minute of the match to get LSU on the board.
Rammie Noel is having herself a career year. She’ notched career highs in goals (3), assists (3), and points (9) through 17 games this season. Her third goal of the season came in LSU’s 4-2 win over No. 4 Arkansas on Thursday night to give LSU a 2-1 lead right before half. She sent a left footed shot to the top left corner of the goal for the score.
LSU head coach Sian Hudson has led LSU to a record of 5-4 against ranked foes during her first two seasons in Baton Rouge. The Tigers beat No. 14 Ole Miss at the 2020 SEC Tournament, and the other four ranked wins have come against No. 15 USF, No. 19 UCF, No. 21 Arizona State and No. 4 Arkansas this year. The win over No. 4 Arkansas on Thursday night was the highest ranked win in program history.
By The Numbers
LSU has thrived under head coach Sian Hudson when they score first. The Tigers hold a record of 16-1-1 when they score first. Hudson has coached 36 matches at LSU and the Tigers have scored two or more goals in 15 of those contests. What is LSU’s record when it does that you ask? 14-0-1.
LSU has scored 39 goals through 17 matches this season. Tinaya Alexander (9) and Alesia Garcia (6) are the team leaders in goals scored. Molly Thompson (4), Athena Kuehn (3), Rammie Noel (3), Maddie Moreau (2), Riley Dixon (2), Meghan Johnson (2), and Shannon Cooke have scored multiple goals while Mollee Swift, Lindsi Jennings, Grace Haggerty, Jordan Johnson, and Wasila Diwura-Soale all have one apiece. The Tigers forced an own goal off a corner against Mississippi State as well.
The scoresheet shows a distribution of wealth for the Tigers offensively. LSU is a side that has numerous players that can put the ball in the net. LSU’s 14 goal scorers on the season are tied for the most in single season in program history. In 2003, 14 different players scored, and in 2002 13 players scored.
In The Record Book
Chiara Ritchie-Williams is the school record holder in minutes played (8,238), games started (91), and matches played (94). She officially took sole possession of the school record for matches played and matches started on October 21 versus South Carolina.
Mollee Swift keeps climbing the charts in a number of areas as well. Her 145 saves in an LSU uniform rank as the seventh most in LSU history, but she has a ways to go before she catches up to Roby DesOrmeaux who is in the sixth slot with 183 saves. Swift’s 18 wins in net rank as seventh most in school history, and her career GAA of 1.07 in a Tiger uniform ranks as the second lowest average over a career currently behind Mo Isom’s school record GAA of 0.86. Swift also picked up the ninth solo shutout of her career in LSU’s win over South Carolina on October 21 to rank No. 7 in that category as well.
Tinaya Alexander has sole possession of the No. 3 spot in program history with 21 after her assist in LSU’s 4-2 win over Arkansas; she had seven her freshman season, six during her sophomore campaign, three last year, and five this year. She’s also took over the No. 10 spot in the LSU history with 63 career points thanks to 21 goals and 21 assists.
The Bulldogs come into Sunday’s match having lost their last two games, a 3-1 loss to No. 10 Tennessee and a 2-1 loss to Vanderbilt. Georgia finished SEC play with a 4-4-2 record this season and their wins came against Missouri, Kentucky, Florida, and LSU.
Mollie Belisle will be the biggest threat that the Tigers have to keep tabs on as her 15 goals lead the SEC this season. Daniella Murguia ranks second on Geogia’s squad behind Belisle with 29 points (9g, 11a) on the season. Belisle and Murguia both scored against LSU earlier this season.
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