Soccer ties Wake Forest after weather delays

Soccer ties Wake Forest after weather delays

After a victory in their home season opener, Coach Wes Hart and the Alabama Crimson Tide soccer team returned home to the Alabama Soccer Complex on Friday night with a scoreless draw against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons.

“This game showed our toughness and our grit,” Coach Hart said. “Going into the game I wouldn’t have been happy with the tie, but based on how the game went, I think we earned the tie there.”

Alabama was left scoreless in the first half, taking four shots with none on goal. Forward Alexis Mouton, who hit the game winner for the Tide last week, missed a shot wide in the 44th minute.

The Crimson Tide kept Wake Forest scoreless with their defensive intensity and mishaps by the Deacons, who took seven shots in the first with one shot on goal saved by Alabama’s goalkeeper Emily Rusk. The Deacons midfielder Bayley Feist missed three shots including two head shots close to the goal and missed wide in the 19th and 20th minute.

“It says a lot about us defensively,” Coach Hart said. “We’re a hard team to breakdown, but we would have liked to be better on the attack.”

As play began for the second half, the Deacons played with more aggression on their shot attempts, with two shots in the first six minutes saved by Rusk. With 38 minutes to play in the second, there was a 30-minute lightning delay.

As play resumed, both teams came out the break with looks at the goal, including a shot missed by Alabama’s freshman forward Tori Gann off the post, and the Deacons midfielder Kendall Fischlein missed a shot saved by Rusk in the 65th minute before a second lightning delay.

“Anytime there is a break it can be a momentum shifter,” Rusk said. “I thought we did a good job weathering the storm and playing through it.”

After the second delay, the Deacons controlled possession for the reminder of the half with neither team finding a goal and the game was sent to overtime. The first overtime Alexis Mouton and Emma Welch missed shots wide that would have given the Crimson Tide the lead and the game was sent to a second overtime.

In the second overtime, the Tide had a good look off a corner kick from Welch, but the header shot was missed high by Celia Jimenez. After 108 minutes of  play, the match ending in a scoreless draw. Emily Rusk finished the game with a season-high seven saves.

“I’m proud of them after this game,” Coach Hart said. “Hopefully we go into Tennessee Tech firing and getting some goals under our belt.”

The Tide will play their next game in Cookeville, Tennessee against the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles. Opening kick will begin at 7 p.m. CT.

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