Wildcats stay winless in SEC play after falling to Auburn at home


Jackson Dunavant

Kentucky Wildcats forward Hannah Richardson (8) dribbles the ball up the field during the Kentucky vs. Auburn women’s soccer match on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022, at the Wendell & Vickie Bell Soccer Complex in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Jackson Dunavant | Staff

Tyler Russell, Reporter

Kentucky womens soccer was defeated 3-1 by Auburn on Thursday, keeping the Wildcats winless in conference play for the season.

Neither team had any wins in SEC play heading into the match with Kentucky coming off a 3-2 loss to LSU in Baton Rouge while Auburn was coming off of a 1-1 draw with Vanderbilt.

The match was back-and-forth from the opening kick until the 17’ when Auburn midfielder Anna Haddock received the ball from Olivia Candelino, striking the top left corner of the net and putting the Tigers up 1-0.

Despite being down 1-0 Kentucky continued applying the pressure, eventually breaking through in the 26’ when defender Maggy Henschler found the top right corner of the net, knotting the game up at one.

Following the goals, the first half ended 1-1 with each team having seven shots each, clearly evenly matched through 45 minutes.

The second half of play started similarly to the first with Auburn scoring first when graduate student M.E Craven released a shot that found its way past Kentucky goalkeeper Tallulah Miller in the 66’.

To make matters worse for Kentucky, Miller was shaken up on the play and head coach Troy Fabiano opted to sub out his starting keeper, despite having no noteworthy injury to speak of, in favor of veteran keeper Steph Stull.

The Tigers kept their feet on the gas after the goal, eventually forcing Kentucky to score an own goal in the 75’.

The own goal was conceded by Henschler, going down as the team’s second own goal in conference play, the first for Henschler.

Before long the whistle blew to signify the end of the match as the Auburn Tigers secured their first SEC win this season, leaving Kentucky winless in conference play.

“You have maybe five games left in the season,” Fabiano said. “You got to keep competing. They’ve (the team) been getting better and that is the most important piece.”

Looking ahead, the Wildcats travel to South Carolina this Sunday, Oct. 9, with kick off scheduled for 2 p.m. EST.

Kentucky continues to seek its first conference win of the season as the SEC Tournament draws nearer, needing wins to qualify before it becomes too late.