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The Gators enter the field for their final warm-up at Miami.

Friday August 21, 2009No. 10 Florida Soccer Opens Season with 1-0 Win at Miami

CORAL GABLES, Fla.

The Gators enter the field for their final warm-up at Miami.

The No. 10 University of Florida soccer team (1-0-0, 0-0 SEC) opened the season with a 1-0 win at Miami (0-1-0, 0-0 ACC) in front of a record Cobb Stadium crowd of 2,277.

 

Senior Ashlee Elliott broke the opening half tie with a goal early in the second half. Fellow senior Tricia Townsend sent in a ball from the sideline which Elliott headed in from eight yards from the middle of the goal.

 

“It was amazing. Tricia was coming down the line and we made eye contact. She sent an amazing ball, the most perfect ball I could ever ask for,” Elliott said. “I jumped over the defender and headed it right in.”

 

The Hurricanes made a push at the end of the match as they looked for the equalizer. UM was awarded a 22-yard free kick in the 89th minute when Elliott was whistled for a hand ball. The shot by Paulette Ricks-Chambers was saved by UF’s Katie Fraine at the far post corner. Another shot by Cassidy Banks in the 90th minute was again stopped by Fraine. For the match, Fraine turned in five saves.

 

Elliott thought the intensity of the match was upped by the in-state rivalry.

 

“It was a tough match. Miami came out and played us real tough. It is a Florida rivalry. They brought it so we had to bring it right back,” Elliott said. “The crowd was amazing. There were a lot of Gator fans as well as Miami fans. It was a good match and I think everyone enjoyed it.”

 

Six freshmen appeared in Florida’s lineup Friday, including starts by Erika Tymrak and Kathryn Williamson. Florida’s head coach Becky Burleigh thought Friday’s opener was a good chance to test her young Gator team.

 

“Winning on the road is always challenging. I thought we could have been more composed, so that is something we’ll be working on in practice,” Burleigh said. “We have to give credit to Miami for keeping the pressure on throughout the match. Opening the season on the road with a win against a quality opponent is a good start.”

 

The match was scoreless at half; with both teams have good looks at the goal. In the seventh minute, Ricks-Chambers moved through the top of the Gator box in a 1v1 opportunity but her shot was wide of the far post. Late in the half, Lindsay Thompson fought through two Hurricane defenders in the 38th minute to take a 10-yard shot but it was wide of the near post. Two Gator freshmen nearly connected for a goal in the 42nd minute. Natalia Torosian served the ball from outside the box to find Brooke Thigpen at the far post, but her header was saved by UM goalkeeper Vikki Alonzo.

 

Next up, Florida opens its home season at the James G. Pressly Stadium with pair of in-state rivals – Florida International on Friday, Aug. 28 at 7 p.m. and USF on Sunday, Aug. 30 at 1 p.m. Both matches can be heard live on WRUF AM 850 with Adam Schick and Matthew Stubbington covering the action.

 

Scoring Summary:

1st

2nd

Final

Florida

0

1

1

Miami

0

0

0

 

Scoring:

UF – Ashlee Elliott (Tricia Townsend) 48:05

 

Goalkeepers:

 

 

Minutes

Saves

GA

Florida

Katie Fraine

90:00

5

0

Miami

Vikki Alonzo

90:00

5

1

 

Statistical Summary:

UF

UM

Shots

13

15

Saves

5

5

Corner Kicks

6

6

Fouls

9

9

Offside

4

2

 

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