Oct. 2, 2009
AUBURN, Ala. - Auburn was outshot by the Razorbacks by an 11-6 margin in the first half as the Tigers entered the halftime intermission trailing 1-0, but two second half Tiger goals by Chelsea Yauch and a game-winner by Katy Frierson gave Auburn their fifth win of the season. Overall, Auburn improves to 5-3-3 on the year and 2-1 in SEC play, while Arkansas falls to 6-3-2 overall and 0-3 in SEC play.
Arkansas controlled the majority of the chances early on in the contest, as the Razorbacks had four shots in the first 10 minutes of the match. Freshman goalkeeper Amy Howard made her first of several sparkling saves at the 33 minute mark, as Arkansas forward Laurel Pastor hit a strike from 18 yards out that Howard parried to keep the game scoreless.
Arkansas got on the board first at the 20 minute mark. Pastor beat her defender, and sent a low cross from the right flank inside the six yard box that forward Allie Chandler who drilled a shot past Howard in the lower left corner of the goal to give the Razorbacks the 1-0 lead.
Frierson nearly knotted things up with 15 minutes remaining in the half on a long-distance strike for 30 yards out, but Razorback keeper Britni Williams was up to the task, coming up with the sprawling stop.
With 10 minutes remaining in the half, Frierson set up freshman Mary Coffed. The sophomore beat a pair of defenders and sent a through ball inside the six that Coffed drilled straight into the charging goalkeeper Williams to preserve the 1-0 Arkansas advantage heading into the half.
"We started off really flat in the first half, but I give our girls a lot of credit," said head coach Karen Hoppa of the Tiger's performance in the first frame. "We came back the second half and played a whole lot better and kept the possession a lot more."
In the early going of the second half, Auburn began to take control of the contest. In the 59th minute, senior Caitlin King ripped a shot inside the 18 that resulted in an Auburn corner kick from the left side.
King's efforts ultimately paid off, as Auburn got on the board on the ensuing corner off the foot of Heather Havron. The sophomore sent in a high drive that found the head of senior captain Chelsea Yauch, who sent the header flying into the top right corner of the net to knot the game at 1-1 with 31 minutes remaining. The goal was Yauch's third on the season.
As Arkansas controlled the scoring opportunities in the first half, Auburn controlled them in the second, as the Tigers registered 11 shots in the first 25 minutes of the second period and held a 15-7 shot advantage in the period.
Auburn found the opportunity it was searching for in the 80th minute as defender Julie King drew a foul in striking range, resulting in a Frierson free kick from 35-yards out. The sophomore sent a rocket into the box that deflected off a Razorback defender into the upper left portion of the net to give Auburn the 2-1 lead and the eventual game-winner, the seventh of the sophomore's career.
Arkansas turned up the offensive intensity inside five minutes, but a stout Tigers defense turned away several opportunities to preserve the 2-1 victory.
"The first half we turned the ball over a lot and you have to give Arkansas credit for that," said Hoppa. "Their defensive pressure was great, but we did a much better job holding onto the ball and we knew the shot opportunities would come. Credit Chlesea and Katy for getting the two goals for us and giving us the win."
The Tigers return to action on Sunday against No. 17 LSU. The game will be broadcast nationally on ESPNU. Kick-off is slated for 2 p.m. CT.