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MT Soccer Falls to Eastern Illinois, 2-1

September 23, 2001 · MT Media Relations
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders knotted the game at one in the second half but watched the visiting Eastern Illinois Panthers net the game-winner in the final 10 minutes of the match to take a 2-1 victory Sunday afternoon at Lady Raider Soccer Field.

The Panthers controlled the action in the first half for the entire 45 minutes, and scored early to take the momentum. Devon Bissell fed a long ball into the box to Beth Liesen, who beat her defender and found the back of the net in the eighth minute of the match. EIU had just six shots in the opening half, but made them count to take the 1-0 lead into halftime.

The Blue Raiders (2-3-0) went more on the offensive in the second half, continuing the pepper the net with shots, 19 in the match with 11 after the intermission. MT tied the contest at one in the 64th minute when sophomore Lindsey Bopp crossed the ball into the six-yard box to freshman Ashley Hicks, who netted her first career goal.

Both squads had ample opportunities in the remaining 25 minutes, but it was the Panthers who were able to find the ball of the net with a game-winner. Again Bissell fed a long ball into the box, this one on a restart near midfield, and after a short scramble in front of the net, Liesen flicked the ball into the upper corner of the net for a 2-1 lead in the 81st minute.

The Blue Raiders outshot EIU, 19-16, in the match, and MT goalie kept her squad in the match in with seven saves, her second straight match with seven saves. But the keeper combination of Lindsay Dechert and Lynne Goehler gave the Panthers (5-1-0) the victory.

"We played well in spurts today," MT head coach Scott Ginn said. "We played much better in the second half than the first, and many of our youngsters played quality minutes. We just need to do a better job of finishing our chances and cut out the lapses we have on defense."

MT hosts Murray State on Tuesday and opens Sun Belt action against Florida International on Friday before finishing the current five-game homestand with a Sunday meeting versus Lipscomb.

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