LSU Gold

Soccer Draws 1-1 With UCF

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Soccer Draws 1-1 With UCF

BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU soccer team (1-0-1) played to a thrilling 1-1 draw against the UCF Knights (1-0-1) on a rainy Sunday afternoon at the LSU Soccer Stadium.

The Knights struck first with a goal from Katie Bradley on a direct free kick in the 30th minute. Mollie Baker scored the equalizer just 46 seconds into the second half with a right-footed finish from 16 yards out.

“What a game!” head coach Sian Hudson said. “The fans that came out today definitely had an entertaining game to watch for sure. I think UCF was the better team in the first half and created better moments.  In terms of the second half response, we made a formation change and were able to get more players across their midfield block to deal with their dynamic movement.”

“It was a huge response right after half time to get a goal that quickly and it was an exciting, end-to-end match towards the end of the second half. Mollie Baker scored a huge goal and played well, while (Mollee) Swift deserves huge credit for her role as a sweeper keeper today. Overall, we’re very proud of the response in the second half. Every time we’ve come across adversity this season, we’ve stood up to the test and responded well.”

UCF held control of the match throughout the majority of the first half. Bradley sent the first shot on goal of the day in the 8th minute as she hit a long shot from 30 yards out that was saved by LSU goalkeeper Mollee Swift. Swift was called into action again only two minutes later as she denied Elie Moreno’s ground shot from 10 yards out.

The Knights took the lead in the 30th minute. Bradley lined up a free kick from 25 yards out and sent a powerful effort on frame that beat the goalkeeper and landed in the back of the net to make it 1-0 in the match.

The Tigers responded with an energetic final 15 minutes of play in the first half. Defender Shannon Cooke grabbed LSU’s first shot on goal of the afternoon in the final minute of the first half. Cooke’s free kick from 30 yards out required Knight goalkeeper Caroline DeLisle to parry the ball behind the goal. The Tigers could not convert on the following corner and went into the halftime break down 1-0.

LSU came out of half-time energized and struck only 56 seconds in. Ida Hermannsdottir laid a simple pass off to Baker at the top of the final-third. Baker nutmegged her opponent and charged into the 18-yard box, where she hit a right-footed effort from 16 yards out that skipped past the UCF goalkeeper and into the bottom-left corner to tie the match at 1-1. The goal was the second of the season for Baker, as well as the second assist for Hermannsdottir.

“I had a slow first half when I came in,” Baker said. “We talked in the locker room at half time that we needed to turn it up a little bit, so when the opportunity came, I jumped on it.”

The first portion of the second half was dominated by the Tigers, who looked for a go-ahead goal. DeLisle made saves in the 54th , 58th, and 74th minutes to deny LSU the lead. In that timeframe, Swift denied UCF with a save in the 68th minute.

The final 15 minutes was a back-and-forth affair that saw both teams trade chances at each other’s ends. DeLisle denied forward Angelina Thoreson’s effort in the 78th minute before denying Baker a second goal of the match in the 84th minute. Baker hit a curling effort on her left foot from 20 yards out that was destined for the top-left corner before DeLisle acrobatically parried the ball.

The save was the final of the day for the goalkeeper as she finished with six saves and played a huge role in the Knights securing a draw.

For the Tigerrs, Swift was called into sweeping action in the 83rd and 85th minutes as she left her line on both occasions and cleared the ball before the attacker could reach it.

The final save of the match came in the 87th minute as Swift caught Moreno’s shot on goal to finish the day with four saves. Neither team could find the breakthrough and the match finished tied at 1-1.

LSU outshot UCF by a margin of 14-10, with the Tigers having seven shots on goal compared to the Knights’ five. The possession battle went the way of LSU, 53% to 47%.

Up Next
The Tigers hit the road and head to the state of California to take on the Pepperdine Waves in Malibu at 5 p.m. CT on Thursday, August 25.