Sunday August 29, 2004No. 12 Florida Soccer Defeats FIU 4-1
Senior Stephanie Freeman turned in two goals Sunday in UF's 4-1 win over FIU.
A 1-1 tie was broken with a seven-minute scoring flurry that produced three goals as the No. 12 Florida soccer team (2-0) defeated Florida International (0-2) 4-1 Sunday afternoon in front of James G. Pressly Stadium crowd of 674.
Senior All-American Stephanie Freeman turned in her first multi-goal match of her collegiate career Sunday, as she turned in Florida’s second and fourth goals. Her first came at 69:22 when she hit a six-yard shot over the keeper off the double assist from Christine Johnson and Katie Johnston.
"I was playing left mid (field), which I had never played since I’ve been here, so it was kind of different. I had the perfect ball from Christine Johnson that split the two defenders. The timing was perfect – it kind of got away from me at first, but I was able to slide it right underneath the keeper," Freeman said.
Freeman ended Florida’s scoring run at 76:11 with a 16-yard shot off the assist from freshman Nikita Waller. Waller also turned in her first collegiate goal Sunday at 71:56, hitting a 16-yard shot off the assist from redshirt freshman Daniela Sanchez. She is the second Gator freshman to turn in a goal in the opening weekend of play, as Jasmine Johnson also scored a goal in Florida’s season opener Friday in a 3-2 win over Dayton.
"The freshmen have been doing an awesome job and I think the best is yet to come from them," Freeman said. "Jasmine (Johnson) and Nikita already having goals in the first two games is awesome. I think it is great that we have freshmen that are able to contribute and we are going to look to them for the rest of the season to score goals as well."
For the second consecutive match, senior Christine Johnson started the Gator scoring with a first-half goal. She hit a six-yard shot at 13:25 off the assists from Ashley Kellgren and Sanchez. FIU tied the match at 42:09 when Janet Ligouri scored on a 10-yard shot.
For the match, Florida outshot the Golden Panthers 18-2. UF goalkeeper Brittni Goodwin did not record a save Sunday, while FIU’s two keepers, Madeline Gannon and Carly Agro, posted three and two saves, respectively.
"I don’t think we played very well today. We have to have better effort," UF Head Coach Becky Burleigh said. "I think we’re getting opportunities, but like in this game, we got the opportunities early so we kept thinking, ‘We’re going to keep getting opportunities’. In some games you may not get that many opportunities, so you just have to stick the ones you have. We have to take advantage of it when we have it, and not just take a let’s wait and see attitude."
Florida now begins a four-match road stretch that begins in Chapel Hill, N.C., for the Nike Carolina Classic tournament. The Gators open the tournament with defending NCAA champion and current No. 1 North Carolina on Friday, Sept. 3 at 7 p.m. This is the first meeting between the two teams since Florida defeated UNC 1-0 for the 1998 NCAA title. The match can be heard on WRUF AM 850 and atwww.GatorZone.com