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Blue Raider defense shuts down Trojans in Sunday win

MT reaches double-digit victories again

October 23, 2011 · Athletic Communications
TROY, Ala. – The Middle Tennessee soccer team picked up its sixth shutout in its last eight Sun Belt matches, as the Blue Raiders handed Troy a 3-0 setback Sunday afternoon in Troy, Ala. The offense struck early and never looked back in the victory, extending MT’s unbeaten streak to eight with one regular-season match left.

The Blue Raiders dominated the match offensively, outshooting the Trojans 16-5, and holding a 6-0 edge on corner kicks. The corner kicks proved to be the deciding factor for Middle Tennessee (10-7-1, 7-2-1 SBC) in the contest, as it netted its first two goals on the set piece situation.

MT struck first at 2:05 when senior Luisa Moscoso knocked in a corner past Troy (9-9-1, 4-6 SBC) goalie Ashley Branham. Another corner kick fell into the Blue Raiders’ favor when redshirt junior Regina Thomas scored at 38:15 for her team-leading and career-best seventh of the campaign.

Middle Tennessee continued to put pressure on the Trojans’ back line and slipped its third goal into the net early in the second half. Redshirt junior Charity Blair connected a pass with senior Shan Jones to cap the scoring at 48:39.

Blue Raider goalkeepers Rebecca Cushing and Jessica Gilchrist each played 45 minutes in net to split the shutout. They collected two saves apiece.

Branham finished with five saves before being relieved for the final 15:45 by Madison Winter.

Jones topped the Middle Tennessee offense with four shots, while Thomas added three in the attack.

The win improves the Blue Raiders’ all-time record against the Trojans to 7-1-1 and is the first regulation victory in the series since 2008.

Middle Tennessee will close the regular season with a 6 p.m. Friday contest at Western Kentucky in Bowling Green, Ky. The Blue Raiders will then play host to the Sun Belt Championships, Nov. 2-5, at Dean A. Hayes Track and Soccer Stadium.

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