Soccer Beats Arkansas, Extends Road Streak
Sept. 30, 2011
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. --- An Alexa Newfield goal in the 27th minute proved to be enough as the Georgia soccer team earned a 1-0 shutout over Arkansas Friday night in the SEC road opener at Razorback Field. The Bulldogs remain undefeated on the road in 2011, now 5-0 away from Athens while improving to 8-3 overall and 2-1 in conference play.
Georgia drops the Razorbacks to 4-6 (2-1) and has now shut out Arkansas in three straight contests.
"I think we did a fantastic job of keeping the ball, moving the ball quickly, and our speed of play was great," said head coach Steve Holeman. "Our outside backs did a good job of getting on the attack and that's ultimately what led to our goal."
"[Newfield and Owens] have done it time and time again and they both had fantastic games," Holeman said. "Jenna was extremely dangerous on the flank and sent a great service in, and once it got on Lex's foot you know it's going in."
Newfield now has five game-winning goals for the Bulldogs and leads the SEC with nine total tallies.
About midway through the first half the Bulldogs saw their best chance of the evening to that point as Nikki Hill sent over a perfect cross right to Susannah Dennis' head, but the attempt hit the crossbar after it would have had the keeper beat. Newfield had a look at a rebound but her effort went wide.
The Bulldogs broke through in the 27th minute when Newfield took a perfect service across from Jenna Owens on the right side, kept her composure and tapped it home from her spot on the left post to break the tie and give Georgia the 1-0 first half lead. On the goal Newfield surpassed her 2010 goal total of eight, while Owens moved into sole possession of the team lead with five helpers.
Georgia continued to pressure after the goal, including a shot by Jamie Pollock that went just wide just moments after the score. Arkansas had its best chance of the half when a laser of a shot was fired wide right by Taylor Green with under 15 to play in the first.
With 12 left, Pollock sent one to Meghan Gibbons whose shot hit off the crossbar, and Newfield had a long-range offering go just high as the clock neared 7:30 before the break. Georgia continued to threaten for its second goal just before intermission as Madeline Barker made a great run beating three defenders in the middle, before dropping back to Riliegh McHugh who sent one just wide and it remained 1-0 at the break.
The Bulldogs owned a 10-5 lead in the shot column through the first 45:00.
Georgia had a great chance off a corner kick about 15 minutes into the second half, as Newfield placed a corner kick chance into the middle that was flicked on by Nicole Locandro, but Bailey Powell's resulting shot was off the mark. The Bulldogs continued to test Arkansas keeper Emily Lillard with shots, but the freshman was up to the test in keeping the Razorbacks within striking distance of finding the equalizer.
Arkansas had its share of opportunities, but a combination of Bulldog defenders - combined with Ashley Baker's three saves - preserved the second UGA shutout of the season. Georgia ended with 18 shots to the Razorbacks' 11.
Georgia has now won seven of its last eight outings and is in need of just one more win to notch the program's 200th all-time victory. The Bulldogs will look to do so Sunday on the road in Baton Rouge, La., as they will take on LSU at 2:00 p.m. ET. Live audio coverage and the live blog will be available at kickoff on Georgiadogs.com. The Tigers tonight defeated Tennessee 2-0 to move to 8-3-1 on the year.