UK soccer sweeps tournament, remains undefeated



By David Schuh

The UK women’s soccer team beat Southeast Missouri 2-0 Sunday afternoon to win the Tropical Smoothie Invitational Championship.  With the win, the Cats extended their win streak to 7 games to start the year, tying the longest such streak in school history.

Among UK’s wins this weekend, the Cats clutched a 2-0 victory over the Louisville Cardinals Friday night.

According to a UK Media Relations press release, UK was the driving force throughout Friday’s game against Louisville.

“I thought we were really composed, I really liked our possession,” head coach Jon Lipsitz said. “We are becoming a better team at keeping the ball and that’s what we want. One of the things we have worked on a lot is the difference between calm and casual. You can be incredibly intense and calm at the same time. As soon as you slip into a little arrogance, and a little casualness, you lose the details and you are no good anymore. We spent a lot of time this week working on that.”

UK Media Relations press release also stated the last time UK was undefeated this late in a season was ten years ago in 2001, when the Cats started the season 7-0-0 before losing their eighth game to Arizona State.

Sunday The Cats started out slowly, struggling to maintain a sustained attack on offense.  The possession was inconsistent, but they stayed in the game due to a strong defensive front that held the Redhawks to just one first-half shot.  But, for Lipsitz, patience is key when dealing with an inexperienced squad.

“With a young team, sometimes you just have to figure things out. But, we’re not giving anything up,” Lipsitz said. “We’re keeping possession until we get the game plan figured out.  That takes some time.  Sometimes, you just have to find a way to win.”

And eventually, UK did that.  In the 65th minute, freshman Molly Huber connected on a corner kick from Kelsey Hunyadi to go up 1-0, her first collegiate point.

“I just kind of ninja-kicked it in,” Huber said with a smile.  “I came in and knew I had to make a run and luckily it went in.”

With time winding down in the 86th minute, junior Natalie Horner volleyed another corner from Hunyadi to put the game away.  For Hunyadi, it was her seventh point this season.

But, on Sept. 11, a day of great importance and reflection for our country, coach Lipsitz made sure to acknowledge the bigger picture.

“Nothing is as important as remembering what we lost 10 years ago,” coach Lipsitz said.  “We talked in the pregame about playing for more than ourselves.  I just want to say thank you to the all the families and the military.”

The Cats return to action on the road this Saturday against Dayton. The next home game is Friday, Oct. 7 at 7:30 against Arkansas.