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Ameera Abdullah scored the only goal of the match Friday to give UF a 1-0 win versus Mississippi.

Friday October 10, 2008Early Goal by Ameera Abdullah Gives No. 12 Florida Soccer 1-0 Win versus Mississippi

Gainesville, FL

Ameera Abdullah scored the only goal of the match Friday to give UF a 1-0 win versus Mississippi.

The sixth-fastest goal in school history gave senior Ameera Abdullah her 60th career point Friday evening. That goal also was the game-winner, as the No. 12 Florida soccer team (10-2-1, 5-0 SEC) defeated Mississippi (5-6-2, 3-2 SEC) 1-0 Friday evening in front of a James G. Pressly Stadium crowd of 1,949.

 

The Gators were awarded a free kick within the first minute of play. Abdullah put the 35-yard free kick in at the far post for her fifth goal of the season, which moved her into a three-way share of Florida’s 2008 goals lead. She now owns 60 career points off of 22 goals and 16 assists. She became the 14th Gator to pass the 50-career points mark in the Sept. 28 match versus Tennessee and now three matches later, she becomes the eighth Florida player in the program’s 14-year history to earn 60 or more points as a Gator.

 

The goal was a boost for the Gators, who knew Mississippi would be a tough challenge as the two teams came into the match ranked No. 1 (UF) and No. 2 (UM) in the current Southeastern Conference standings. The earliest UF goal previously scored this season also came by Abdullah when she hit the first goal of 2008 at Colorado in the 13th minute.

 

“We knew they were going to come out hard on us so we tried to just weather that. It definitely set the tone and made them calm down and made them think about how they were going to play us,” Abdullah said. “It gave us a lot of confidence because we’re not use to scoring so early.”

 

The Gators came from behind to win both of their road matches last weekend. The early goal Friday was certainly welcome, but UF Head Coach Becky Burleigh would have liked Florida to finish some of its other chances to give the team some breathing room.

 

“We made it a focus to get ahead and not put ourselves in a hole early. I thought that was good leadership by our older players to take charge of that in the locker room and get it done. Sometimes scoring that early can relax you a little too much where you think it’s going to be too easy,” Burleigh said. “I thought we had a lot of good quality chances we just didn’t seem to put away tonight. This game could’ve been really blown open. From that standpoint we have to do a better job of finishing.”

 

10 Quickest Goals in Gator Soccer History

Time

Name

Date

Opponent

:19

Abby Wambach

10/15/00

@ Mississippi

:29

Andi Sellers

10/17/97

@ Tennessee

:56

Sarah Yohe

8/27/99

Florida State

:57

Casey Hamel

11/3/01

Clemson

:58

Sarah Yohe

10/3/99

FIU

:59

Ameera Abdullah

10/10/08

Mississippi

1:07

Casey Hamel

10/7/01

@ Kentucky

1:10

Ashlee Elliott

9/7/07

USF

1:10

Andi Sellers

9/1/00

USF

1:33

Abby Wambach

9/24/99

LSU

Florida had some chances to expand their lead, including in the 16th minute when a diagonal cross in the box just missed the outstretched foot of Megan Kerns, who was looking to score at the far post corner. In the 53rd minute, Abdullah took a hard shot that banged off the cross bar, but landed just before the goal line.

 

One of the Rebels’ best looks at the goal came in the 78th minute when senior Amy Bayles took a 14-yard shot that curved toward the upper far post corner. UF goalkeeper Meghan Berlingo read the ball perfectly, leaping to make the catch and end the play. The Mississippi front line tested Berlingo in the later portion of the match, as she made three of her career-high six saves in the final 12 minutes.

 

Florida outshot UM 12-9 and the two teams each turned in six shots on goal. UM goalkeeper Megan Vickery turned in five saves Friday.

 

Next up, Florida continues action versus SEC Western Division rivals when plays host to Mississippi State on Sunday, Oct. 12. MSU lost 2-1 at South Carolina Friday. Sunday is Senior Day for Gator soccer and Florida’s three seniors - Ameera Abdullah, Megan Kerns and Liz Ruberry will be honored in a pre-match ceremony. The first 1,000 fans at Sunday’s match receive water bottles courtesy of Dodge. Following Sunday’s match, all kids 12 & under can come to the field for a skills clinic conducted by several Gator soccer players. 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

Final

Mississippi

0

0

0

Florida

1

0

1

 

Scoring:

UF – Ameera Abdullah (free kick) :59

 

Goalkeepers:

 

 

Minutes

Saves

GA

Mississippi

Megan Vickery

90:00

5

1

Florida

Meghan Berlingo

90:00

6

0

 

Statistical Summary:

UM

UF

Shots

9

12

Shots on goal

6

6

Saves

5

6

Corner Kicks

4

2

Fouls

12

8

Offside

2

1

 

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