Oduro's 64th Minute Strike Sends No. 25 Memphis Past Alabama 1-0
Aug. 26, 2011
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Christabel Oduro scored in the 64th minute and the defense held Alabama to one shot on goal as the University of Memphis defeated the Crimson Tide 1-0 at the Alabama Soccer Complex on Friday.
"I thought it was a good, hard fought match," head coach Brooks Monaghan said. "It was a game where we weren't able to play our style for 90 minutes. We played our possession style in spurts, but they made it difficult on us. Alabama is a very solid team and I am very proud of our girls for finding a way to win. Tonight was a total team effort and a good win for us."
Oduro's 64th minute strike came after Lizzy Hildebrandt found Oduro open for a one-on-one opportunity. Oduro, who scored for the second time this season, found clear space and struck from five yards away to the near post. Hildebrandt and Melissa Smith tallied assists on the goal.
The Lady Tiger defense didn't surrender a shot on goal until the 86th minute, but Elise Kuhar-Pitters made the save to keep the clean sheet. Alabama tallied 11 shots in the match, but only one shot slipped past Memphis' back line.
"Our defense played well tonight, but Elise came up massive game-winning save for us there at the end," Monaghan added. "The defense did a good job in not letting shots go on target and Elise did well when she had to come up with a save."
With the shutout and victory tonight, Kuhar-Pitters moves within one shutout and one victory of tying former goalkeeper Isabel Birones for the top spot in the program record books in each category. The 1-0 clean sheet on Friday was Kuhar-Pitters' 24th career shutout and the victory is her 38th.
The U of M out-shot the Crimson Tide 14-11 on the match and held a 7-1 shots on goal advantage.
Memphis forced the pace in the first 10 minutes of the match getting three shots off, but Smith would be the lone Lady Tiger to place a shot on frame. Alabama fired their first shot in the match in the 11th minute, but the U of M defense would block it away.
The Lady Tigers finished the first half with a 7-4 shots advantage. Smith finished the half with two of Memphis' four shots on goal. Rasheeda Ansari and Lizzy Simonin also put shots on frame that were saved by Alabama goalkeeper Justine Bernier.
Memphis starts the season 3-0 for the second-straight season and wins it's sixth-straight road opener. The Lady Tigers improved to 8-9 all-time in road openers. With the win over Alabama, Memphis has won six-straight matches against SEC foes. The U of M has also won 15-straight matches in August dating back to the 2003 season and outscored opponents 55-5 in those 15 matches.
The U of M continues the three-game road trip at Samford on Sunday. Match time is set for 2 p.m. in Birmingham, Ala.