Sailfish Come Up Short at #5-Ranked Tampa

Written By: Michael Brown, Palm Beach Atlantic University SID

Tampa, Fla.- Hitting the road after an eight day layoff, the Palm Beach Atlantic University women’s soccer team jumped out to a 2-0 lead on the University of Tampa on Thursday evening before seeing the Spartans score three unanswered goals to take the match.

Currently ranked fifth in the nation, the Spartans were witness to the tough play of PBA’s defense early while also watching the Sailfish register the games first two goals including shutting out the Spartans in the first half. Despite the lead, the second half belonged to UT forward Megan Tobin as she netted a hat trick including two scores off penalty kicks to give Tampa the hard-fought victory at home.

“We played really well and the offense really seem to move the ball well it was just unfortunate with the game’s outcome,” said head coach Dwayne Whiteheart.

Sophomore Lindsey Bates (Lakeland, Fla./Calvary Baptist Academy) got the scoring started for PBA when she received a terrific through-ball from junior Jessica Rodriguez (West Palm Beach, Fla./Palm Beach Central HS) in the 27th minute to give PBA a 1-0 advantage. The Sailfish would face many Spartans offensive attacks but stood strong in keeping UT off the scoreboard in the opening half of play.

Looking to add to their lead, freshmen Angie Kuhn and Alex Regin hooked up for goal number two only 53 seconds into the second half as Regin fed Kuhn with a cross which Kuhn connected on with a header to extend the PBA lead to 2-0.

In a span of seven minutes, Tobin would eliminate the Sailfish lead by tallying two penalty kicks that turned into two Spartan scores. The first PK came via a handball by the Sailfish that put the Spartans in prime scoring position.

Midway through the second-half the rains would roll in and present both teams with very sloppy playing conditions. UT would take the lead for good just short of the 71st minute as Courtney Evans assisted Tobin to give the Spartans the victory.

PBA goalkeeper Ashley Morrell had a busy night as the Spartans outshot the Fish 21 to five in the contest as Morrell tallied seven saves in the loss.

“Ashley played very well once again and helped keep us in the game from the get-go,” said Whiteheart. “I was really proud of the girl’s efforts, especially considering the sloppy conditions in the second-half,” continued the fifth year head coach of the Sailfish.

With the tough-luck defeat, PBA drops to 3-5 on the season and will look to get back to their winning ways on Saturday, October 6th when they play host to Eckerd College at 7:00 p.m. at Lantana Field. PBA defeated the Tritons back on September 7th by a score of 2-1.

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