Aug. 27, 2010
CHAPEL HILL, NC. - Despite putting the pressure on right from the beginning, the Missouri women's soccer team fell to the Blue Devils 3-1 in its first game of the Carolina Nike Classic. Senior midfielder Krista Kruse scored the first goal of the match off of a short cross from fellow captain Alysha Bonnick in the 24th minute.
Kruse notched four of Missouri's 13 shots on the day, with two shots on goal. Freshmen Danielle Nottingham and Dominique Richardson each tallied two shots on the day along with junior Kendra Collins. The Tigers outshot Duke 9-6 in the first half, and also earned two corner kicks to the Blue Devils' one.
"We played a very good first half," said head coach Bryan Blitz. "Duke made some adjustments in the second half, that I feel, as a head coach I should have responded to, however our team played until the end. I was proud that we were in the game until the end; It's not how you start, it is how you finish."
Duke returned the pressure in the second half with a goal in the 50th minute. The Tigers continued to fight back, and freshman forward Danielle Nottingham tallied two shots on goal before Duke found the back of the net off of a deflection from MU goalkeeper Jessica Gwin to make the score 2-1 for the Blue Devils.
Gwin came through under pressure making a diving save after MU defender Jess Greer earned a yellow card, awarding the Blue Devils a free kick outside the 18-yard line. Gwin made a total 9 saves on the day.
The Blue Devils notched the final goal of the game in the 89th minute, but not before the Tigers could get in some well-placed shots. A cross from Bonnick just missed the head of another Tiger who was blocked, and whizzed past the goal untouched.
"When we designed the schedule we wanted to take our young team on the road to play the best," said Blitz. "This will pay off for us in the end."
The Tigers come back out Sunday at 1 p.m. ET to take on the Tarheels at Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, NC. Fans can follow the game on GameTracker, or keep up with the Tigers on Twitter and Facebook.