OXFORD, Miss. — The No. 1-seeded Auburn soccer team was upset 1-0 here Thursday afternoon to No. 8 seed LSU in the first round of the Southeastern Conference Tournament. Auburn falls to 14-4-2 on the season while LSU improves to 12-4-3 and moves on to play Florida or South Carolina.
Through the first 25 minutes of the game, the Auburn offense dominated control of the ball. With 32.09 remaining in the first half, sophomore forward Chrissy Culver was taken down inside the box and Auburn was awarded a penalty kick. Junior defender Erin Hinson took the kick and missed high of the goal keeping the score at 0-0.
Auburn continued with its’ opportunities collecting 10 shots in the first half including five on goal. With outstanding play coming from forwards Sarah Steinmann, Chrissy Culver and Jaqueline Schwarz, AU kept LSU goalkeeper Robyn DesOrmeaux busy.
Towards the end of the half; however, LSU began to apply some offensive pressure as it had three direct kicks just outside of the Auburn box. Auburn goalkeeper Megan Rivera made all three saves as the shots came cleanly to her.
With less than three minutes remaining in the half, Auburn had one of its’ best chances as Steinmann split two defenders to get a shot on goal. DesOrmeaux blocked the shot and Steinmann was there for the rebound. This time, DesOrmeaux hung on to the ball for the save. Auburn got a wake-up call in the 54th minute as LSU forward Mandy Heintz just missed a score as she took a header off a corner kick and hit the left post and bounced out.
Most of the play during the second half was played in the middle third as Auburn had just six shots in the half and LSU tallied five.
The Tigers of LSU got a break with just 4:38 remaining in the game as Heintz got an open look at the Auburn goal compliments of an assist from Danielle Keath giving LSU a 1-0 lead in the elimination game.
In the game, Auburn out-shot the Tigers of LSU 16-11, but couldn’t convert on their nine shots on goal.
“It’s one of those things where you don’t finish your chances when you get the opportunity,” head coach Karen Richter said. “You have to give LSU credit though. They stuck to their game plan. We are just very disappointed that we didn’t finish chances that we had.”
Auburn, the regular season SEC champion will now await its’ fate for the NCAA Tournament. The Tigers will find out Monday, Nov. 11 during the selection show, which will take place at 3:30 p.m. CDT on ESPNews.