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The Gators celebrate Erika Tymrak's team-leading ninth goal of season in UF's 2-0 win versus FGCU in NCAA play.

Friday November 9, 2012Gators win 2-0 in opening round of NCAA Tournament against FGCU Friday

Gainesville, Fla.

The Gators celebrate Erika Tymrak's team-leading ninth goal of season in UF's 2-0 win versus FGCU in NCAA play.

By Sarah Gibson, UF Communications

 

Donning their sharp new orange and blue striped uniforms, the No. 2 regional seed Florida Gator soccer team (18-4-1, 11-2 SEC) defeated the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles (14-4-3, 7-1-1 A-Sun) in NCAA Championship opening round play. The win provided Florida’s Becky Burleigh the 400th win of her coaching career. With the 3 p.m. start time at the James G. Pressly Stadium, it was the first match of the entire NCAA Championship as others would be played later Friday night.

 

Coming off last Sunday’s 3-0 win over Auburn to claim its 10th Southeastern Conference Tournament title, Florida shutout their opponent not only in goals, but defensively the Gators overpowered the Eagles. The Eagles, who won their conference tournament title against Mercer last week, recorded zero shots to Florida’s 19.

 

The main objective was to win and advance and that’s what we did,” Burleigh said. “I was pleased with our ability to keep them off the board in terms of shots and opportunities. I thought we were a bit unlucky not to score more than two. We kept possession for long stretches of the game so there’s not more we could really ask for.”

 

The Gators’ first score came in the middle of the first half from a give-and-go between Erika Tymrak and Adriana Leon with Tymrak pushing her season goals lead to nine. It started when Tymrak passed the ball off to Leon at the top of the 18-yard box. Just before defenders closed in on her, Leon back-heeled the ball to an open Tymrak who then slammed the ball in the top right corner of the net past the reach of FGCU goalkeeper Brittany Brown at 21:10.

 

I was dribbling the ball and I saw Dri [Adriana Leon] at the top of the box and I played it to her,” Tymrak said. “And Becky [Burleigh] always gets on us about continuing our run and so I kept on running and Dri gave me a heal pass that, as Alan [Kirkup, UF Assistant Coach] would say, is on another level. It was incredible what she did.”

 

The Gators took seven shots in the first half but could only turn one into a goal.

 

“I think the most important thing is that we are getting the chances,” Tymrak said. “I think that finishing them will eventually come but that we’re getting the chances is huge for our team.”

 

Florida took 12 shots in the second half and added another goal. The Gators’ attempts were repeatedly cut off by goalkeeper Brown of FGCU who recorded nine saves in the match, a career high for the freshman.

 

Defensively Brownie [Brittany Brown] kept us in the game,” said FGCU head coach Jim Blakenship. “She stood on her head for us.”

 

With only 14 minutes to go in the match, Annie Speese made the final score to seal the Gators’ first-round victory. Havana Solaun pushed the ball out wide right to Tymrak who was about eight yards out when she crossed the ball to the feet of Speese after Solaun, continuing her run, dummied the ball off to her. Speese then roofed the ball to the middle of the goal, which made it her sixth score of her sophomore season.

 

“At halftime Becky talked to us about putting the crosses in the box and just driving them in. Then it was on the people making the runs if we didn’t get there,” Speese said. “Erika did a great job of playing it.  She ran down the endline and the defenders were checking back with her so I found the gap back at the penalty kick spot and I kind of screamed for her and she heard me.  Havana [Solaun] was there too but I called her off and just hit it and got kind of lucky.

 

“It was good to get one out of the many that I missed,” she said with a chuckle.

 

Division I Women’s Soccer Coaching Records – by Victories (through Nov. 9, 2012 matches) – Active & All-Time Coaches

Rank

Name

Team(s)

Yrs.

Won

Lost

Tied

Pct.

1.

*Anson Dorrance

(North Carolina 1979-11)

34

738

49

28

.929

2.

*Len Tsantiris

(Connecticut 1981-11)

32

500

71

50

.845

3.

*Becky Burleigh

(Berry 1989-93; Florida 1995-11)

23

400

107

33

 .770

4.

*Jerry Smith

(Santa Clara 1987-11)

26

393

121

50

.741

5.

*Randy Waldrum

(Tulsa 1989-94; Baylor 1996-98; Notre Dame 1999-11)

23

384

99

28

.779

 

At the 26th minute of the match, redshirt senior defender Kathryn Williamson entered the game for the first time since Sept. 2 when she tore her right meniscus against Florida International.

 

“I was a little nervous,” Williamson said. “It’s been quite some time, but it was great to have some minutes today.”

 

The All-American’s first appearance in the game created some emotions for her teammates.

 

I almost started tearing up actually,” Tymrak said. “I’ve played with Kat [Williamson] the last four years and it’s been a long season without her and that fact that she’s back, it feels so good.”

 

The Gators will either face Miami (FLA) (9-7-3, 4-4-2 ACC) or UCF (17-4-1, 8-3-0 Conference USA) next Friday in NCAA Second Round action. The Gators beat the Knights in preseason play 2-0 back in August while they suffered their first loss of the 2012 season to the Hurricanes 4-1. Times and site will be announced by the NCAA later this weekend.  

 

Scoring Summary:

1st

2nd

Final

 

 

 

Florida Gulf Coast

0

0

0

 

 

 

Florida

1

1

2

 

 

 

 

Scoring:

UF: Erika Tymrak (Adriana Leon) 21:10

UF: Annie Speese (Tymrak) 76:05

 

Goalkeepers:

 

Minutes

Saves

GA

Florida Gulf Coast

Brittany Brown

90:00

9

3

Florida

Taylor Burke

90:00

0

0

 

 

 

 

 

Statistical Summary:

FGCU

UF

 

Shots

0

19

 

Shots on goal

0

11

 

Saves

9

0

 

Fouls

6

8

 

Corner Kicks

0

4

 

Offsides

2

1

 

 

 

 

 

Cautions: Caroline Triglia/UF, yellow (67:40)

 

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