MT comeback falls short in loss at North Texas

Thomas and Loye tally goals in contest

October 18, 2012 · @MTAthletics

DENTON, Texas - A valiant comeback fell just short for Middle Tennessee soccer as the Blue Raiders dropped a 3-2 decision to North Texas on Thursday evening at the Mean Green Soccer Complex.

UNT (13-3-2, 8-0-1 Sun Belt) used three first half goals and never relinquished the lead. Middle Tennessee (13-4, 8-1 SBC) added a pair of goals to pull within striking distance, but the Mean Green held them at bay. The loss snapped a school-record tying eight match win streak for MT.

With the victory, UNT pulled ahead to first place in the Sun Belt with 25 points. However, Middle Tennessee's chances for a regular season title aren't over. A UNT loss to Western Kentucky on Sunday combined with a Middle Tennessee win against the Hilltoppers next Friday would give the Raiders the regular season crown.

The scoreless contest was broke up by Michelle Young when she flared one in net from Karla Pineda's cross.

Just five minutes later, Amber Haggerty added the second Mean Green goal for her sixth of the season. North Texas continued the offensive aggression as Pineda used a header to give UNT the 3-0 edge.

The Raiders continued to battle as senior Regina Thomas broke up the shutout at the 31st minute. The goal moved Thomas into a tie for ninth with teammate Paige Goeglein with 23 career goals.

With the full momentum, Middle Tennessee freshman Kate Loye added the Raiders' second goal at the 36:39 mark. The goal was the seventh of the season for the midfielder.

Middle Tennessee had a some scoring opportunities in the second half, but were kept scoreless from UNT goalkeeper Jackie Kerestine. The keeper snagged five saves en route to the win. Redshirt senior Jessica Gilchrist (5-2) notched a season-best nine saves for the Raiders.

UNT outshot the Blue Raiders, 25-11, while managing eight corner kicks to just one for MT. The Raiders secured seven shots on goal, but were unable to get past the keeper.

Middle Tennessee closes out the regular season next Friday. The Blue Raiders will host rival Western Kentucky for Senior Night on Oct. 26 at 7pm.

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