Sophomore Macee Blanchard's first career goal proved to be the game-winner against Mississippi State
Sept. 20, 2013
STARKVILLE, Miss. - The Mizzou soccer team opened Southeastern Conference play with a 3-1 win over the Mississippi State Bulldogs in a torrential downpour Friday night in Starkville, Miss. The Tigers improved to 5-4 overall and 1-0 in league play with the win, while the Bulldogs fell to 3-5 and 0-1.
Missouri got goals from junior Kaysie Clark, sophomore Macee Blanchard and freshman Lauren Selaiden in the victory. Redshirt junior goalkeeper McKenzie Sauerwein made eight saves in net for the Tigers.
For the third consecutive game, the Mizzou's offense came out of the gates hot and notched a goal in the first nine minutes of the match. Clark dribbled down the middle of the field and unleashed a 35-yard rope into the upper left netting for a 1-0 Tiger lead. The tally was a fourth of the year for Clark, who is now tied for the team lead in both goals (four) and points (10).
In the 16th minute, Missouri sent a flurry of shots on net but could not add another tally. Freshman Melanie Donaldson had two shots and sophomore Reagan Russell one within a few seconds. On the ensuing corner kick, senior Dominique Richardson sailed a beautiful ball into the box but the header by redshirt senior Sarah Thune was saved on the line by a Bulldog defender.
Blanchard gave the Tigers a 2-0 lead with just 12.9 seconds remaining in the first half for the first tally of her Mizzou career. Stationed in the left corner of the box, she received a ball from redshirt freshman Loudell Crumpler and blasted a shot past Mississippi State's goalie and into the netting. Crumpler's assist also marked her first career point in a Tiger uniform.
Sauerwein kept Mississippi State off the board in the 60th minute with a point-blank save. Bulldog Elisabeth Sullivan was one-on-one with Sauerwein but the keeper stood her ground and punched the 12-yard shot over the crossbar.
The Tigers had excellent chances to add an insurance goal in the second half but could not convert on opportunities from redshirt sophomore Lauren Flynn, senior Alyssa Diggs or sophomore Reagan Russell.
The Bulldogs pulled within one, 2-1, when Sullivan scored a goal for Mississippi State in the 79th minute. Sauerwein made a great save on an initial shot from Sullivan but the Bulldog got the rebound and punched it into the goal.
However, Mizzou answered less than two minutes later when Selaiden headed home a corner kick from Richardson. The goal was the third of the year for Selaiden. Missouri had a 28-21 advantage in shots in the contest.
The Tigers return to the pitch on Friday, Sept. 27 when the squad hosts the Georgia Bulldogs at 6:30 p.m. at Walton Stadium.
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