Sept. 8, 2006
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -
Freshman Gabi Rivera scored the game-winning goal and added some cushion with her second goal of the game 24 minutes later as the Tigers battled back from a 1-0 halftime deficit to defeat Portland State, 3-1, on Friday afternoon at the Illinois Soccer Tournament.
The Tigers surrendered a first-half goal for the first time this season but as they have done time-and-time again, they turned up the offensive pressure after the half to move to 5-0 on the season.
"We got after the team at halftime and they showed a lot of character and the ability to come back and take care of business with three goals in the second half to put the game out of reach," AU Head Coach Karen Hoppa said.
Kara Kasten tied the game at 1-1 just under four minutes into the second half with her first goal of the season, taking a centering pass from Jenn Johnson and ripping a shot to an unguarded lower-left side of the net from 6-yards out.
Rivera gave Auburn the lead nine minutes later as Caitlin King sent a pass over the PSU defense to a lightly covered Rivera, who sent the ball to the far post over a diving keeper from 5-yards out to make it 2-1 at the 57:27 mark.
"It felt great to score my first goal. Caitlin gave me a great ball and I just tried to find the back of the net and fortunately I did," Rivera said.
Rivera put the game away with just over eight minutes left in the game when Becca Howell chipped a ball to her and she connected from 9-yards out for the game's final score.
Of Auburn's 11 goals this season, seven have come in the second half while the four first-half goals all came in the win over Jacksonville State.
Portland State scored at the 27:22 mark when Dolly Enneking chipped a ball over AU keeper Allison Whitworth
from 5-yards out to make it 1-0 Vikings.
The Tigers have run off five straight victories to start the season for first time since 2003 and the third time in school history.
Portland State fell to 0-4-1 on the year.
AU will try and tie the school record for wins to start the season on Sunday when the Tigers face the host Illini at 3 p.m. CT.