Tigers Drop Season Finale 2-1 to SMU; Will be #5 Seed in C-USA Tournament
Oct. 30, 2005
Dallas, Texas. - Despite scoring the first goal of the game, Memphis gave up two goals to SMU later in the game and went on to lose its final regular season game 2-1 to the Mustangs on Sunday. With the loss, Memphis closes out its regular season with a 12-6-0 overall record, one game better than last year, and 6-3-0 in Conference USA, a game and a half better than last year in conference play.
Emiko Schwab scored the Tigers' lone goal of the game on a play similar to her goal on Friday night at Tulsa. She headed in a corner kick by Shoko Mikami at the 12:17 mark for her fourth goal of the year. Schwab has now scored in three straight games, becoming the third different Memphis player to do so this year, joining Mikami and Kylie Hayes. It is also just the ninth time in school history that a player has scored in three straight games for the Tigers and Schwab is just the eighth player in school history to accomplish this feat. Her goal was also the first SMU had given up in its last five games.
It remained a 1-0 advantage for the Tigers until a little over five minutes before halftime. At the 39:29 mark, SMU evened things up when Autumn Browning headed in a centering pass from Olivia O'Rear. In the 54th minute, the Mustangs had a golden opportunity to go ahead when they were awarded a penalty kick. But Memphis keeper Isabel Briones stopped Carley Phillips' shot to preserve the tie.
Finally, at the 67:15 mark, the Mustangs took the lead for good when Krystal Bailey redirected a ball into the goal off a pass from her sister Kimber Bailey. The Tigers would have a few opportunities to even up the game after Bailey's goal but the Mustangs were able to keep Memphis off the scoreboard for the remainder of the game.
"I thought we sat back after we scored first and weren't as aggressive as we should have been," said Memphis coach Brooks Monaghan. "It was an average performance for us. SMU created more scoring chances and was the more aggressive team so they deserved to win. We need to take this as a learning experience and take something from this game to the conference tournament and move forward."
The Mustangs outshot Memphis 18-10 on the day. The game was also a very physical contest as there were a combined 37 fouls called, 22 for Memphis and 15 for SMU, and three yellow cards given out, two for the Tigers and one for SMU.
With the loss and Rice's 2-0 win over Southern Miss, Memphis was passed by Rice in the standings and finished alone in fifth place, one point behind UTEP and Rice, which tied for third. Rice won out on a tiebreaker with UTEP to gain the third seed and the #5 seed Tigers will now play the #4 seed Miners in the quarterfinals of the C-USA Tournament on Wednesday (Game time TBA). SMU and UCF tied for first place while UAB finished sixth followed by Houston, East Carolina, and Tulsa in a three-way tie for seventh. The complete C-USA Tournament field will be announced later tonight by the conference office.
Postgame Notes: Mikami's assist enabled her to win the conference assist title with 10 and she also won the point title by herself with 38 points. She ended up tying for the league lead in goals with 14 ... Schwab's four goals in the last three games enabled her to just all the way into the fourth on the team in goals (4) and points (10). She is the fourth different Memphis player to have a double digit point total this year, this all coming after not recording a single goal in the first 15 games.