Blue Raiders Drop 2-0 Decision at USMSeptember 12, 2003 · MT Media Relations
The homestanding Lady Eagles and Blue Raiders played an extremely physical match, with 19 fouls between the two squads and one yellow card for each.
Middle Tennessee controlled play for much of the first half, possessing the ball but came away with few quality scoring opportunities, shooting high and right and USM keeper Anna Snyder.
After the break the Lady Eagles came out firing on all cylinders, taking it right to Middle Tennessee. But the Blue Raiders recovered and the match grew more physical with shoving and grabbing all around.
Middle Tennessee's Emily Carter had a chance 15 minutes into the second half to put her squad ahead, taking a bouncing ball on the backside against Snyder, but the senior's shot was wide and the momentum seemed to turn in USM's favor afterwards.
The Lady Eagles tallied the first goal of the match in the 71st minute, as Kim Turner played a through-ball to Carly Barkley, who beat Middle Tennessee keeper Danielle Perreault, sliding it past the keeper and into the net to give her club the lead.
USM scored again just three minutes later, as Micah Stephens played a high and bounding ball from midfield that Perreault mishandled into a goal.
The Blue Raiders continued to apply pressure throughout the final 13 minutes, but could not push one past Snyder, who picked up her fourth win of the season to keep the Lady Eagles undefeated.
"We played like this was our first away game," head coach Aston Rhoden said. "We did not adjust to the officiating or the emotion USM had with it being their first home game.
"We also did not play with the kind of urgency or intensity that we typically play with, and that kept [USM] in the game. [USM's] emotion, intensity and home field advantage made it a game, and they went out and won it.
"We also did not adjust well to the physical play of the game. They are a counterattack team and they sit back and wait for you to make a mistake, and then they go after you when that happens."
The Blue Raiders finish their two-game road swing Sunday with a 1 p.m. match versus Tulane in New Orleans, La., at the Westfeldt Complex.
Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.
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