Soccer notches pivotal conference road win

Blue Raiders take 3-1 decision at UL-Lafayette

October 19, 2007 · MT Media Relations
LAFAYETTE, La. - Middle Tennessee continued its unbeaten play in the last four matches with a 3-1 win at Louisiana-Lafayette here Friday evening. The Blue Raiders are 3-0-1 over the last four matches and they will go for the weekend sweep in a tight Sun Belt Conference race at Louisiana-Monroe Sunday.

Kala Morgan and Kelly Downs had one goal and one assist each, while Caitlin Reeves scored what proved to be the game-winner with the first goal of the match in the 21st minute.

The Blue Raiders (7-5-3, 4-2-1) cashed in the some opportunistic chances they had created and scored on three of their 10 shots.

"I was pleased that we finally were able to finish some good balls," Middle Tennessee coach Aston Rhoden said. "We were able to control things for the most part and the defense continued to play well for us. There is a great deal of balance in our conference this year so anytime you can pick up a conference road win at this point in the season it is big."

Reeves' first goal of the season also was the first of the match. The junior forward finished a well-played pass from Downs to give the Blue Raiders the early 1-0 lead. Both teams clamped down defensively the rest of the half and Middle Tennessee owned a 1-0 advantage at intermission.

Middle Tennessee wasted no time putting the match away out of the half with two goals in the first 7:12 of the half. The goals were scored in a span of 2:13 as the Blue Raiders took control of the match.

Morgan increased the lead to 2-0 with her unassisted goal in the 50th minute. It was Morgan's 34th career goal and moved her into second on the all-time list, three behind teammate Holly Grogan's 37.

The quick-strike Blue Raiders came right back when Morgan assisted Downs' fourth goal of the season just 1:13 later to increase the lead to 3-0. Louisiana-Lafayette (7-6-3, 3-2-2) climbed to within 3-1 when it ended the shutout in the 53rd minute but the Blue Raiders' defense wouldn't bend and freshman keeper Kela Casiple swatted away the scoring chances the Ragin' Cajuns did muster with eight saves. She improved to 5-2-1 in her rookie campaign.

Middle Tennessee is at Louisiana-Monroe Sunday at 1 p.m., before returning home to face Denver and North Texas in the final home weekend of the season.

Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.