Memphis Women's Soccer Takes Down Rebels 2-1 in Oxford
Sept. 5, 2008
Oxford, Miss. – The Lady Tigers took home a win over SEC foe Ole Miss tonight with a final score of 2-1. Goals were netted by Ashley Berra and Vendula Strnadova. Both were their first goals of the 2008 season.
A chilly late summer night began with a defensive battle. Neither squad surrendered easy opportunities to their rival, but 8:55 into the opening half Vendula Strnadova received the ball at open field and passed it ahead to an open Ashley Berra on a break away. The goalie was drawn off the line to challenge Berra, but she was able to deposit a shot past the goalie in the back of the net giving the Tigers a 1-0 lead that they would defend into halftime.
“I was so excited,” Berra said of her score. “It felt great to get a goal at the beginning of the season. I was pleased with the way everybody played. We played together and came together as a team, but most of all our team battled really hard and we came out with a win.”
The second half continued with a defensive battle. But with 15:12 remaining in the game, following a foul near the corner junior midfielder Laura Laufenberg sent the ball to an open Strnadova thirty yards in front of the goal. She launched a bending shot over the hand of the outstretched Rebel goalkeeper hitting the crossbar and bouncing in. This marked Strnadova’s first goal of the 2008 season and putting the Lady Tigers up 2-0.
“I had a little bit of luck,” Strnadova said. “I got a hard pass that I trapped and just kicked it. When I looked up it had hit the crossbar and went in.”
The relentless Memphis defense was quick to squander many of Ole Miss’ potential scoring opportunities, but with only 7:59 minutes left to go, junior Rebel Mallory Coleman sent a corner kick to sophomore Taylor Cunningham who headed the ball past Memphis goalkeeper Elise Kuhar-Pitters putting the Rebels within one goal. The Tigers were able to hold of the charging Rebels attack for the final eight minutes of the contest taking home a victory in front of a raucous crowd of 412. Monaghan and his Lady Tigers escaped a battle with a victory.
“First I’d like to tip my hat to Ole Miss,” Monaghan said. “They are a really good team. They had a little bit of an unfortunate start, but I know that they are going to end up doing fantastic. We’re ecstatic about being able to come to Ole Miss and play a quality opponent like them and get the victory.”
Monaghan was very impressed with the play of his team amidst an intense atmosphere.
“What a game.” Monaghan said. “It seems like every time that we play Ole Miss that we have a battle and tonight didn’t disappoint. It was a battle to the last second. We’re very excited to get the win and now we have to turn around and play another tough opponent in Miami. We’re going to go home and enjoy this for the night and start on some things with Miami tomorrow. I was very pleased with the girls’ performance. We dodged a few bullets tonight. Elise (Kuhar-Pitters) came up big time tonight with a few saves, but overall it was a great performance and I’m happy that our team is moving in the right direction.”
The Tigers return home after this heated and emotional victory to host the Miami Hurricanes on Sunday Sept. 7 at 1:00 p.m. at Mike Rose Soccer Complex.