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Megan Kerns signals her overtime score which gave Florida a 2-1 OT win over Georgia Friday to open SEC play.

Friday September 26, 2008Pair of Goals by Megan Kerns Gives No. 16 Florida Soccer 2-1 OT Win over Georgia

Gainesville, FL

Megan Kerns signals her overtime score which gave Florida a 2-1 OT win over Georgia Friday to open SEC play.

A pair of goals by senior Megan Kerns, including the overtime game-winner, gave the No. 16 Florida soccer team (6-2-1, 1-0 SEC) a 2-1 OT win over Georgia (2-7, 0-1 SEC) Friday evening in front of a James G. Pressly Stadium crowd of 2,573.

 

Florida scored the first goal of the match when freshman Jazmyne Avant sent a ball in from the right side into open space in the box. Megan Kerns just touched the ball at the near post corner to score in the 62nd minute.

 

The Bulldogs tied the match shortly after when UGA was awarded a 22-yard free kick. Freshman Jamie Pollock’s shot kicked off the near post into the goal for her first score of her UGA career at 66:39.

 

Friday’s match was extended to overtime for the fourth time in the two team’s 20 all-time meetings, with all of the extended minutes contests coming at Pressly Stadium. The Gators recorded its second overtime victory of the 2008 season when Kerns brought the ball down the center of the field and slide the ball ahead for freshman Lindsay Thompson. She ran the ball down a couple of steps into the box but UGA’s goalkeeper Michelle Betos came off her line to make the stop. Thompson’s shot deflected off of Betos back to Kerns’, who put the right-footed volley into the empty net at 94:06.

 

Getting a good strike on the ball was going through Kerns’ head when she saw her golden opportunity.

 

“’Don’t shank it.’ That was my only thought. I knew if I could get a solid hit it would probably get under the crossbar,” Kerns said. “It felt really good to do that.”

 

The score gives Kerns the Gators’ 2008 goals lead at five and the total also stands as a season-high for Kerns’ collegiate career.

 

Kerns wasn't sure of how it happened, but she conducted all of her post-match interviews with an ice bag pressed to the sizable knot on her forehead. But getting the overtime winner seemed the perfect salve for the injury.

 

“The goal is more important because it gave our team a win. My (bump on her) head will go down hopefully,” Kerns said.

 

Both goalkeepers turned in some quality saves Friday. Perhaps Florida’s best look at the goal in the opening half came in the 40th minute. Nicky Kit sent the ball in from 30 yards to the far post. Ameera Abdullah’s volley to the far post corner looked like it was going to score, but Betos made the save.

 

Fraine stopped what looked to be a sure Bulldog goal by Marah Falle in the 58th minute.

 

“I was coming out for the girl looking for a shot. Checked my backside and all of a sudden this girl was wide open. I saw her check it and I thought “Uh oh”. She sent the ball over and it was all in slow motion,” Fraine said. “I felt like I attacked the player (to make the stop) and got as big as I could. The ball just kind of hit off of me and landed right behind me, so I grabbed it and it was over.”

 

Betos recorded six saves Friday and Fraine turned in two.

 

Although getting a win in overtime is a thrill, UF Head Coach Becky Burleigh would have preferred for the Gators to finish some of their early opportunities for a less dramatic match.

 

“I thought we had some great chances. Ameera had a great chance; Megan had a great chance; Lindsay Thompson had a good chance. We just have to put teams away a little bit better when you get the opportunity. If that game is 2-0 at halftime it’s a lot different than if it’s 0-0 at halftime. We’re pleased with the win, especially opening up the conference.”

 

Next up, Florida continues its challenging opening weekend of SEC action by playing host to Tennessee (3-6, 0-1 SEC) on Sunday, Sept. 28. Match time is set for 1 p.m. (ET) at the James G. Pressly Stadium. Tennessee lost 2-1 at South Carolina Friday evening. The first 1,000 fans at Sunday’s match receive a free backpack, compliments of Gatorade. Live, streaming video can also be seen at www.GatorZone.com – just click on the GatorVision icon for more information. Adam Schick and Matthew Stubbington will cover the action Sunday.

 

 

Scoring Summary:

1st

2nd

OT1

Final

Georgia

0

1

0

1

Florida

0

1

1

2

 

Scoring:

UF – Megan Kerns (Jazmyne Avant) 61:55

UGA – Jamie Pollock (unassisted) 66:39

UF – Kerns (Thompson) 94:06

 

Goalkeepers:

 

 

Minutes

Saves

GA

Georgia

Michelle Betos

94:06

6

2

Florida

Katie Fraine

94:06

2

1

 

Statistical Summary:

UGA

UF

Shots

8

14

Shots on goal

3

8

Saves

6

2

Corner Kicks

6

4

Fouls

10

12

Offside

5

1

 

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