Soccer splits with UTSA and UTEP


Becky McMullan(22) sprints past Caitlin Donavon(27), a Charlotte 49ers defender, on Oct 10, 2015. The Golden Eagles bested the 49ers 1-0. Fadi Shahin/Student Printz

It was an interesting weekend for Southern Miss. On Friday, the Golden Eagles faced UTSA in a double-overtime thriller.

Southern Miss started out on fire, pressuring UTSA with seven shots to start the game, which eventually ended in a corner kick. In the 24th minute, the Golden Eagles pushed it into the back of
the net via Kierstin Bradley. After halftime, the Golden Eagles’ pressure did not let up. Southern Miss was relentless and fired the ball on net, but were denied each time. UTSA continued to hang around and the Roadrunners found the back of net in the 84th minute to tie it.

The two teams then went back-and-forth for the rest of the match, but the last play was key for Southern Miss. Brittany Taylor nabbed her fourth save of the game and dished it out to Breann Hedin who sent a pass to Bradley. Bradley took the pass and ended the game and notched the victory for Southern Miss.

“(After) losing to these guys six-nil last year, it feels great just to come out here and win a 2-1 game,” Taylor said. “We fought hard.”

Southern Miss dominated UTSA and out-shot them 24-11, and with the win the Golden Eagles improved to 4-9-3 overall and 2-5 in C-USA. As for Taylor, she became the all-time saves leader in Southern Miss history in the game.

“It feels awesome (to break the record),” she said. “I couldn’t have done it without my whole team behind me. With everything that happened last year with my finger, it feels awesome just to come out here, play as hard as I can and make those game-winning saves.”

Setting the career record as just a junior, Taylor will have over a full season to extend her record, making it quite difficult for anybody who follows her to break it. It will likely become a record that will never be touched in USM history. Things did not go the same way for Southern Miss on Sunday as they faced UTEP on Senior Day.

The Golden Eagles out-shot UTEP eight to three in the first half, but still trailed. UTEP tacked on another goal in the 60th minute to push their lead to 2-0. Mary Kate Smith smashed in the fi rst Southern Miss goal in the 74th minute to cut the lead to one. Things got even more interesting when Bradley, who had three goals on the weekend, added another to send the game to overtime. However, the Golden Eagles had run out of their comeback luck and ended up dropping the game in the 103rd minute, 3-2.

On Friday, Oct. 23, the Golden Eagles are back at the Southern Miss Soccer Complex for their last home game of the 2015 season. The squad takes on North Texas at 3 p.m.