Oct. 28, 2011
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
The Auburn soccer team rallied from a two-goal deficit 62 minutes into the match but allowed an 88th minute goal to fall, 3-2, at Alabama in the regular-season finale for both teams. The loss drops Auburn's record to 11-6-2, 5-5-1 SEC and sets up a SEC Tournament first round rematch with LSU on Wednesday.
"This is a crushing loss. For us to come back from two goals down and then to give up a goal in the 88th minute, three minutes after we tied it, is just heart-breaking," Auburn Head Coach Karen Hoppa said. "Credit to Alabama. They finished the chances they had and it was a great soccer game."
Trailing 2-0 after Kendall Khanna scored her fourth goal of the season off of a deflection in the 62nd minute, Auburn started its charge back. Julie King started it with her fifth goal of the season, it coming in the 77th minute, finishing off a Katy Frierson through pass to the far post.
An Alabama foul in the box in the 85th minute gave Auburn a chance to recoup its own handball in the box that led to a successful Alabama PK in the 41st minute. Frierson was the player chosen to take the attempt and delivered with her sixth goal of the season, knotting the game at 2-2. The goal also gave her 97 career points, tying her for the school record.
The tie lasted just two-and-a-half minutes as Ashley Willis scored the game-winner with a 30-yard strike from in front of the Auburn bench at 87:10. The strike sailed high and long on Auburn goalkeeper Amy Howard, going upper-90 on the opposite post for Alabama's first win over Auburn since 2005.
Alabama had gone up 1-0 in the 40th minute after an Auburn handball in the box following an Alabama corner led to a penalty kick. Theresa Diederich took the PK for Alabama and netted her seventh goal of the season to give Alabama the lead going into the locker room at the half.
Auburn had a pair of near misses at evening things up at 1-1 early in the second half as Jessica Woilfe's header following a corner in the 58th minute and Mary Coffed's header off of a Tori Ball cross in the 61st minute both just missed the net.
Howard faced 27 shots and made five saves, including a spectacular diving stop in the 35th minute.
Justine Bernier made seven saves for Alabama (9-7-3, 4-5-2 SEC).
Auburn goes into the SEC Tournament as the seventh seed and will try to collect a second win over LSU this season, which won the SEC West. Game time is noon on Wednesday, Nov. 2.
Auburn-Alabama Box Score
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