Oct. 12, 2007
AUBURN, Ala. -
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Sophomore forward Stephanie Fransoso made the most of her first career start, scoring the game-winning goal as Auburn defeated No. 19 LSU, 2-0, on Friday night to move into first place in the SEC West Division.
"That is a big win, definitely the biggest of the season so far," Auburn Head Coach Karen Hoppa said. "Both teams played good, clean soccer and there was a lot of attacking. I am just thrilled with how we played and for us to come out with a victory."
Fransoso, who has been a major contributor off the bench for Auburn, collected her second goal of the season on a turn-and-fire in the sixth minute of play. Forward Caitlin King had started a run up the near sideline to get the play started and served a ball into Rebecca Howell at the top of the six. Howell, who was covered by two LSU defenders, slipped a pass to Fransoso, who drilled it past the LSU keeper for Auburn's quickest goal this season.
"Caitlin had an amazing cross to Becca and she flipped it in to me. I just finished it," Fransoso said.
"We knew both teams were going to get chances and it was going to be all about whoever put the first one in," Hoppa said. "Stephanie (five shots) had a huge night and that goal kick-started our offense."
Howell salted the game away for Auburn with her fifth goal of the season in the 72nd minute. Again it was King who got the run started, dribbling up to the top of the 18 where two LSU defenders collapsed to guard the explosive scorer. King promptly turned and drilled a pass to an uncovered Howell for the 2-0 Auburn lead.
"I am just glad I finished for Caitlin, because she worked really hard with all of the defenders on her and she deserved that," Howell said.
With her two assists on the night, King now has nine for the season and 14 in her career, both of which are the seventh-best in Auburn history for a single-season and a career.
Allison Whitworth was forced to make nine saves on the night to earn her sixth shutout of the season and 12th of her career.
The two teams combined to take 21 shots while only being whistled for six fouls, indicative of the speedy game that was contested.
Auburn moved into first place in the SEC West with its victory coupled with Ole Miss' 1-0 loss to Florida.
Auburn has now won seven consecutive regular-season matches over LSU, including four shutouts.
Auburn stays at home for a 2pm match on Sunday when it plays host to Arkansas. Admission is free.