Golden Eagles' comeback falls short in OVC opener
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech soccer team opened its Ohio Valley Conference schedule Sunday afternoon, falling just short in its comeback attempt in a 2-1 loss to Jacksonville State.
The Golden Eagles, who outshot the Gamecocks 16-9 played well offensively for the second straight home game. The 16 shot attempts were the second most by Tech this season. The offensive attack was kept out of the goal for most of the game, however, by a relentless JSU defensive effort.
"We let an opportunity get away from us today," said head coach Daniel Brizard. "I think we played some great soccer in the match today. We executed our plan fairly well. I thought we played better and made some improvements since our last match. We just need to step up and get the job done when it counts."
Junior forward Ellie Iaciofano continued her fantastic season, scoring her sixth goal of the year in the 71st minute to bring the Golden Eagles to within one of the Gamecocks. Senior defender Jacquie Watkins was credited with the assist. A Kris Cambron header flew just over the crossbar in the final 10 minutes and JSU was able to hang on for win. Iaciofano ranks among the top scorers in the OVC.
Freshman goalkeeper Jordan Brown added four more saves to her already impressive season total of 49. Her 53 saves rank her among the top netminders in the OVC and kept her ahead of JSU's Katelyn Geddings, who also had four saves on the day.
The Golden Eagle defense played well, limiting the Gamecocks to six shots on goal and nine overall. Five Tech players logged a full 90 minutes in the contest, including Iaciofano, senior midfielder/defender Kerri Reid, senior defender Julie Thompson, and junior defenders Katie Phillips and Taylor Hicks. Phillips and Brown have played every minute this season for TTU, both ranking near the top in the OVC.
Tech will continue its conference schedule on Friday, Sept. 28 when it hosts SIU-Edwardsville in a 3 p.m. CT tilt at the Tech Soccer Field. The Golden Eagles will follow that match up with its annual senior day contest on Sunday, Sept. 30. TTU will match up against Eastern Illinois in the 1 p.m. match which honors its seniors for their years of service both on the field and in the classroom.