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Soccer Heads to Knoxville To Face No. 16 Tennessee

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Soccer Heads to Knoxville To Face No. 16 Tennessee

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — LSU Soccer (8-3-3, 3-2-1 SEC) is set to take on No. 16 Tennessee (9-3-1, 5-1 SEC) in Knoxville on Friday, October 14 at 6:00 p.m. CT at the Regal Soccer Stadium.

The match will be available through streaming on SEC Network Plus. Links to watch and live stats for the match can be found on lsusports.net

Series History – Tennessee

LSU trails in the series history against Tennessee by a margin of 4-14-4. The last time the two teams met in 2018, they battled to a 1-1 draw in the SEC Tournament before the Tigers advanced on penalty kicks, 7-6.

Last Time On The Pitch 

The LSU Tigers hosted the Alabama Crimson Tide at the LSU Soccer Stadium on Sunday, October 9, where the Tide grabbed a 5-0 victory over the Tigers.

LSU had the first chance in the match just 25 seconds in as midfielder Ida Hermannsdottir had a shot on goal that was saved by Alabama goalkeeper McKinley Crone. The Tigers believed that they took the early lead in the 10th minute when midfielder Wasila Diwura-Soale headed home a goal, but it was called back due to offsides. 

Alabama got on the board first in the 21st minute. Kate Henderson pressured Swift into making a heavy touch in her box and managed to poke the ball into the goal. The Crimson Tide doubled their lead in the 32nd minute as Gianna Paul knocked a cross into the back of the net. 

Swift finished the first half with four saves, including a tremendous aerial catch in the 31st minute. The first half finished 2-0 in favor of Alabama and the teams headed in for the halftime break. 

The Crimson Tide extended their lead to 3-0 seven minutes into the second half. Felecia Knox took a direct free-kick from just outside the box and sent a strong shot on goal that deflected off an LSU player and rolled into the bottom-right corner. 

Alabama won a penalty kick in the 68th minute as Shannon Cooke brought down an attacker in the box. Reyna Reyes stepped up to the spot and slotted the ball into the bottom-right corner to make it 4-0 on the day. 

The final goal came a minute later as Riley Mattingly-Parker dispossessed an LSU defender in the box, took a touch and ripped a curling shot from 15 yards out into the top-right corner. Mattingly-Parker extended Alabama’s lead to 5-0 on the day and the Crimson Tide completed a shutout in Baton Rouge.  

Swift finished the second half with three saves to take her total on the day to seven.

Top Scoring Tigers

Freshman Ida Hermannsdottir and fifth-year senior Alesia Garcia have led the way in goals for the Tigers this season. Hermannsdottir currently leads the team with six goals while Garcia follows with five.

Hermmansdottir found her first collegiate goal in the 33rd minute against San Diego to give the Tigers the 1-0 lead against the Toreros. She found her second and third career goals in the 27th and 82nd minutes against Grambling to earn the first brace of her collegiate career. This marked back-to-back games where the freshman found the back of the net.

The forward continued her hot streak and tallied the fourth goal of her career at No. 6 Rutgers, when she intercepted a ball in the final third and hit a right-footed effort that beat the Scarlet Knights’ goalkeeper and landed in the bottom left corner. 

Goal number five came in her SEC debut against Vanderbilt as she hit a free kick from 25 yards out that was powerful enough to beat the diving goalkeeper and land in the bottom-left corner. The goal was the game winner for LSU, who won 2-1 on the day.

Hermannsdottir’s sixth and most recent goal came at Texas A&M, when she charged into the box before being upended by an Aggie defender and the referee pointed to the penalty spot. Not short on confidence, Hermannsdottir stepped up and calmly placed the ball on the left side of the goal to tie the match at 2-2 in College Station.

Forward Alesia Garcia has also been a leader in the offense, recording five goals for the Tigers. Garcia opened her scoring on the season in California. The forward tallied her first goal against Pepperdine in the 54th minute. The Waves goalkeeper was unable to control the ball on a deflected shot from Jordan Johnson and Garcia seized the opportunity. She pounced on the loose ball and placed it into the back of the net. The goal was the first of the season for Garcia and the 26th of her collegiate career.

Her second goal came against the San Diego Toreros to mark the second straight game she found the back of the net for the Tigers. Garcia capped the night off in fashion for the Tigers as she scored the fourth goal of the match in the 87th minute to secure the road win. 

The Colorado native continued her scoring at Southern Miss in the 52nd minute for the Tigers as she sent a rocket into the top-right corner from 19 yards out to take the 1-0 lead in the match.

Her fourth finish against No. 6 Rutgers came on a rebound goal after the Scarlet Knights goalkeeper loosely deflected a shot from Thoreson. The goal from Garcia took the early 1-0 lead for the Tigers in New Jersey. 

Garcia’s fifth goal of the season and first in conference play came against Mississippi State. Defender Rammie Noel broke away down the left flank and sent a cross to the back post and found Garcia, who was unmarked and calmly headed the ball home. The goal was a strong response from the Tigers and tied the match in Starkville 1-1.

Youth On The Pitch

After scoring three each in non conference play, forwards Mollie Baker and Sage Glover both found the back of the net in SEC play for the first time in their collegiate careers in the Tigers win over the Kentucky Wildcats on Sunday, October 2. The freshmen both narrowly trail the top scorers with four each on the year.

Glover gave LSU a 2-1 lead in the match as she finished off a fantastic team sequence with a 10-yard goal that landed in the right-corner. Baker’s goal came in the 58th minute when the match was tied at 2-2. The freshman tracked a cleared ball to midfield and capitalized on a mistake in defense to break away with pace and beat the goalkeeper one-on-one. 

Freshman Baker and Glover are tied as the second leading goal scorers with four each. Of LSU’s 31 goals scored this season, 12 have come from true freshmen (38.7%) while another 12 goals have come from 5th year seniors/graduate students.

The Tigers have 13 goal scorers and have shown strong depth in the scoring department by scoring two or more goals in every match but one this season (1-1 draw vs. UCF).

Terrific Thoreson

Angelina Thoreson leads the team in assists with six. The freshman continues to be a proven weapon on both sides of the ball and continues to create scoring opportunities for the Tigers. 

Thoreson recorded her first career assist in the season opener against Stephen F. Austin, where she sent in a ground pass inside the box that found Baker for the finish.

Her second assist came on the road at San Diego on a strong and accurate ground cross from the right side of the box that found Glover, who slotted it past the goalkeeper and extended the Tiger lead to 3-1.

Thoreson tallied assist No. 3 in Friday’s match against Grambling. Thoreson controlled the ball on the edge of the box and laid off a simple pass to Hermannsdottir, who came in charging from midfield and smashed the goal from 24 yards out.

The forward scored the first collegiate goal of her career at LSU in the squad’s matchup against Princeton on September 8. Thoreson took the early lead for the Purple & Gold in the 14th minute as she slotted a ball from 15 yards out into the bottom-left corner.

Thoreson tallied her fourth assist in the Tigers face off with No. 6 Rutgers and took a shot on goal, which fell loose off the goalie and found Garcia for the rebound finish. 

Against Missouri, Thoreson tallied her fifth assist as she laid off a pass to Dobles, who hit a first-time cross into the box and found Prince, who took a volley touch that found the back of the net. 

The freshman continued her tally of assists against Kentucky. Thoreson sent a ground cross on a first-time effort to find Sage Glover, who scored in the 34th minute to give the Tigers the 2-1 lead against the Wildcats. The assist increased Thoreson’s team-high total on the year to six.

The forwards six assists rank sixth in the conference through 14 games played. 

The Sweden native played the last three seasons (2019, 2020, 2021) for IK Uppsala, a professional club back in Sweden and made over 50 appearances for the club. Thoreson played the 2019 season in the Damallsvenskan division, which is the highest level of women’s soccer in Sweden. She scored five goals in 20 games played during the 2021 season.

Tigers vs. Ranked Opponents

The Tigers matchup against Tennessee will be the squad’s fourth ranked opponent matchup this season and second in conference. 

LSU has a 5-7-1 record against ranked opponents under head coach Sian Hudson. During Hudson’s time, LSU has played in 13 ranked matches and have been competitive in all of them. The five wins under Hudson come from No. 14 Ole Miss, No. 15 USF, No. 19 UCF, No. 21 Arizona State, and No. 4 Arkansas. 

The losses came against No. 8 Texas A&M in the fall of 2020, a one-goal loss to Arkansas at the 2021 SEC Tournament, and two overtime losses to ranked Auburn teams. LSU’s last draw against a ranked opponent came in August when the team drew 2-2 at No. 14 Pepperdine.

In total, the Purple and Gold have won 18 matches and drawn 11 matches against nationally-ranked opponents in program history.

SEC Standings

LSU sits in fifth place in the SEC with four games remaining on the conference schedule. The top 10 teams in the league advance to the conference tournament which will take place from October 30 – November 6 in Pensacola, Fla.

The Tigers have earned 10 points in conference play this year and rank fourth in the SEC West division. The two division champions will serve as the top two seeds at the SEC Tournament, and the final eight teams are decided by points accumulated in conference play. 

For a full list of standings, visit secsports.com.

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