Gator Locker Room
Gator Ticket Office

Soccer Headline

Megan Kerns turned in three goals in Sunday's 6-1 win at Alabama.

Sunday October 19, 2008Megan Kerns' Hat-Trick Leads No. 10 Florida Soccer to 6-1 Win at Alabama

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -

Megan Kerns turned in three goals in Sunday's 6-1 win at Alabama.

Senior Megan Kerns’ first collegiate hat-trick led the No. 10 University of Florida soccer team (13-2-1, 8-0 SEC) to a 6-1 win at Alabama (9-6-1, 4-4 SEC) Sunday afternoon in front of an Alabama Soccer Complex crowd of 432. Several players combined to match Florida’s highest goal total of 2008 (UF also won 6-1 versus Nebraska on Aug. 31), as seven Gators registered a goal or an assist Sunday.

 

Prior to the match, fellow Gator senior Liz Ruberry told Kerns that Sunday was Kerns’ day to score. Her prophecy turned out to be three times on target.

 

Kerns scored both of Florida’s first-half goals. The first came when sophomore Nicky Kit took a few touches to bring the ball near the top of the box. Her cross to the near post was met by the diving head of Kerns, who placed the ball in untouched in the 23rd minute.

 

Her second goal was set up when freshman Lindsay Thompson crossed the ball from the left touchline to the near post. Kerns received the ball with back to goal, but made an assertive turn to put the ball in from short distance at 34:44.

 

Did You Know...

Megan Kerns is the 10th Gator in the program’s 14-year history to turn in three or more goals in a match. Others to turn in three or more goals in a match include (number of three or more goal matches):

 

Stacy Bishop (1)

Danielle Fotopoulos (6)

KeLeigh Hudson (1)

Ashley Kellgren (1)

Megan Kerns (1)

Melissa Pini (2)

Andi Sellers (5)

Jill Stevens (1)

Abby Wambach (10)

Sarah Yohe (3)

 

Kerns scored her third after the Gators were putting pressure on the Tide goal in the second half. After some near chances, UF was finally rewarded when Jessica Eicken sent a 20-yard ball into the box that found Kerns near the center of the goal line. She won her 1v1 opportunity with the goalkeeper to complete her first collegiate hat-trick at 71:18. The last Gator hat-trick was turned in by KeLeigh Hudson in Florida’s 5-1 win versus LSU on Oct. 28, 2007. She also surpassed the 50-career points mark on Sunday, making her 15th Gator in the program’s history, and the second senior this season, to pass that mark. Kerns has now scored 51 points off of 18 goals and 15 assists. Fellow senior Ameera Abdullah reached the 50- and later the 60-point marks earlier this season.

 

“I have to give credit to the crosses because they all were great crosses,” Kerns said. “The first (goal) started with a great cross from Nicky (Kit). I just kind of fell into it, got my head on it and beat the keeper. The second started with another great cross from Lindsay Thompson. I was just able to sneak it far post past the keeper. For the third goal, Jess (Eicken) sent in a great ball that I barely hit with the end of the toe.

 

“The team played great today,” she continued. “Everyone worked hard and played really well.”

 

Sunday was Kerns’ fourth multi-goal match of her career and the third of the season. In 2008, she turned in a pair of goals in Florida’s 6-1 win versus Nebraska on Aug. 31 and also turned in both goals, including the game-winner, in the 2-1 OT win versus Georgia on Sept. 26.

 

The Tide scored the first goal of the second half in the 55th minute when Brooke Rogers put in a Jessica Deegan corner kick. Florida pushed the lead back to a two-goal cushion just over three minutes later. Tahnai Annis played a ball from the top of the box out wide where Angela Napolitano’s 16-yard strike scored for her fifth goal of the season.

 

Thompson turned in her first multi-goal match as a Gator Sunday, hitting Florida’s final two goals within a four-minute span. Her first goal was an 18-yard strike from the top of the box that had just enough bend to score at the upper corner slot. Her final goal came when Kerns sent the ball from the center of the box to Caitlin Howard. Her cross from 10-yards above the box was headed in by Thompson from eight yards at 75:36 for her sixth goal of the season.

 

UF Head Coach Becky Burleigh thought a formation change by the Tide helped UF in the second half.

 

“They made a tactical switch in the second half that I think opened things up a little bit for us when they decided to play three in the back. We’ve had some success against teams that play three (defenders) in the back. They did score so that did help them close the gap, but I had a feeling that if they left three in the back it would be good for us,” Burleigh said. “That was a terrific pair of goals from Lindsay, a great hat-trick from Megan and a timely goal by Angela. It was a great all-around team contribution today.”

 

The Tide were forced to play the final 16 minutes a man down when Colleen Posey was given her second yellow card of the match. Florida’s goalkeepers, Meghan Berlingo and Katie Fraine, split halves Sunday. Berlingo turned in one save and Fraine had two. UA’s goalkeeper Kara Gudmens posted four saves Sunday.

 

Next up, Florida returns home to play host to SEC Western Division rival Arkansas for the Oct. 23 regular-season home finale. Match time is set for 7 p.m. (ET) at the James G. Pressly Stadium. The first 500 fans receive Publix reusable shopping bags. Gainesville Regional Utilities will be on hand Thursday to provide energy saving tips. The first 250 to the match who bring in apparel with another team’s logo to “recycle” will receive a free Gator Soccer morph ball, compliments of GRU. Admission is free for all Gator soccer regular-season matches.

 

SUN Sports will air Thursday’s match live. The match can also be heard live on WRUF AM 850 or on the simulcasts on Gator Radio - Cox Channel 96/946 in Gainesville and GatorZone.com with Adam Schick covering the action.

 

Scoring Summary:

1st

2nd

Final

Florida

2

4

6

Alabama

0

1

1

 

Scoring:

UF – Megan Kerns (Nicky Kit) 22:50

UF – Kerns (Lindsay Thompson) 33:44

UA – Brooke Rogers (Jessica Deegan) 54:12

UF – Angela Napolitano (Tahnai Annis) 57:24

UF – Thompson (Kerns) 71:43

UF – Thompson (Caitlin Howard, Kerns) 75:36

 

 

Goalkeepers:

 

 

Minutes

Saves

GA

Florida

Meghan Berlingo

45:00

1

0

 

Katie Fraine

45:00

2

1

Alabama

Kara Gudmens

90:00

4

6

 

Statistical Summary:

UF

UA

Shots

16

13

Shots on goal

10

4

Saves

3

4

Corner Kicks

4

3

Fouls

8

12

Offside

1

1

 

Florida Athletics - A Championship Experience with Integrity - Vision Statement
  • University of Florida
  • NCAA
  • Sun Sports / Fox Sports Florida
  • IMG
  • SEC Network

© 1998 - 2014 University Athletic Assoc., Inc., Sun Sports & IMG College. All Rights Reserved.