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Sunday September 1, 2002Cincinnati Defeats No. 13 Gator Soccer Team 2-1

CINCINNATI, Ohio

The No. 13 Florida soccer team (0-2) saw a first-half lead evaporate, as the Gators lost to Cincinnati (2-0) 2-1 Sunday afternoon in front of a Meyer Stadium crowd of 473.

Florida got on the board at 39:46 when Stephanie Freeman sent the ball to Crystal Frimpong, who drove the ball down the right side of the field. She cut across goal and hit a short shot to the left post.

The Bearcats evened the score early in the second half, when Renee Balconi scored off a Rachel Lieberman corner kick at 45:59. UC took the lead at 59:49 when Amy Simonson headed in a short goal at the far post off a Tasha Wagner cross.

For the match, UC outshot the Gators 10-8. UF goalkeeper Jordan Kellgren turned in four saves, while UCís Tracy Hale posted two saves.

"Itís a hard loss because of what happed. We came out hard and played a good first half. We talked about two things at halftime. One was coming out with intensity and the second was to be organized on set plays," UF Head Coach Becky Burleigh said. "Then we give up a goal in the first five minutes on a set play. Cincinnati did a very good job in the second half of withstanding the pressure. They put a lot of people behind the ball and did a good job of withstanding the pressure Ė that isnít always easy to do. So hatís off to them for that.

"The competition steps up next week," she continued. "If we donít sort out some of those fundamental issues Ė if we arenít able to put into practice what we are asking the players to do, we will have a long September and maybe even a long season. Some of this is a matter of pride. Corner kicks being matched up with someone 1v1 is a matter of pride. We need to learn how to win. We need to have that pride. Itís not just pride for this team, but pride for the entire program. That is where we really need to step it up."

Florida returns home to play host to No. 9 Connecticut on Friday, Sept. 6 at 7:00 p.m. Admission is free at the Percy Beard Stadium.

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