Oct. 21, 2009
AUBURN, Ala. - The Auburn soccer team will play the first of its final three regular season matches this Thursday night when it travels to Knoxville, Tenn., for a 6pm CT matchup with host Tennessee. Auburn enters the match 6-7-3 overall and 3-5-0 in the Southeastern Conference, which places it third in the SEC West and seventh overall. Tennessee is 7-6-3, 3-3-2 SEC which puts it fourth in the SEC East and sixth overall.
"Tennessee is going to be tough. They have a great stadium, one of the best stadiums and a great environment," Auburn Head Coach Karen Hoppa said. "We are taking this week like it's already the playoffs for us. We have to have the mentality that it's a one-game season."
Auburn is just one point ahead of Arkansas and two in front of Kentucky and Alabama in the Road to Orange Beach heading into the stretch run, with Alabama needing to play four matches due to a postponement with Ole Miss while they rest of the conference will play just three.
"We control our own destiny but we have to get the job done in these next three games," Hoppa said. "If we win two of the three we are in for sure; we maybe get in with one win, but we really need to try and get two."
Auburn's offense broke out for four goals last weekend, three off the foot of senior Caitlin King, after enduring three straight shutouts. King now leads the team in goals (five) and is tied with sophomore Katy Frierson, who had three assists last weekend, for the team lead with 15 points.
"(During practice) we emphasized getting our numbers into the attack and we carried that over into the games," Hoppa said. "We had a very attacking mentality, starting with Friday night, getting our numbers forward and getting the ball forward quicker."
Auburn trails in the series with Tennessee, 4-8-0, and is searching for its' first win in Knoxville in four tries.
Auburn returns home following the Tennessee match for its' final home game. Auburn will play host to Georgia at 1pm CT on Sunday in a match televised live on Fox Sports South. Sunday is senior day and the senior class of Stephanie Fransoso, Lizzie Hamersly, Rebecca Howell, Caitlin King, Jenni Prescott and Chelsea Yauch will be recognized on the field prior to the match.