Cats upset No. 9 Arkansas


Tanya Samarzich. The University of Kentucky women’s soccer team hosted Pitt in a exhibition match following the UK soccer Fan Day on Saturday, August 13, 2016, at The Bell. Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics

By Autumn Hamlin

The UK women’s soccer team handed the No. 9 Arkansas Razorbacks their first home loss all season Sunday afternoon in Fayetteville. The win gave the Cats their first road top-10 win in over three years and first SEC win all season.

With the win, the Cats record improved to 5-8-4 overall and 1-6-3 in SEC play.

In the first half, both teams fought offensively, leaving the first 45 all tied up at 1-1. In the 24th minute, Zoe Swift served the ball along the left flank across the face of the goal to captain Kaitlin Miller who drilled the ball into the far post of the goal across the Razorback goalkeeper, scoring her 4th goal of the season and put the score up 1-0 in favor of the Cats.

The Razorbacks responded in top-10 ranked fashion equalizing the score in the 34th minute with a goal by Lindsey Mayo, scoring her 8th goal of the season.

Coming back from the second 45, the Cats pressed the Razorback defense by earning all 5 of the corner kicks in the second half.

Related: Cats win streak snapped at Mizzou

The match winning goal was scored in the 67th minute. Tanya Samarzich started the goal scoring play with a ball wide outside to Gina Crosetti who served the ball over the heads of the Razorback center backs where Swift was waiting in the front of the goal and scored the eventual match winning goal.

Throughout the 90-minute match, the play of goalkeeper Ayanna Parker, who was filling in for Evangeline Soucie, had a dazzling performance in the net, making two incredible stops in the final moments of the match to preserve the road win.

“I have been coaching for 34 years and I have never been prouder of a team than I am of this team today,” UK head coach John Lipsitz said.

The team hopes to continue the winning momentum for their last game of the season and senior night on Thursday night against the Georgia Bulldogs home at the Bell. The pre-match ceremony for the seven graduating seniors will begin at 7:15 pm and the match will start at 7:30 pm.