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Soccer Remains Unbeaten

Despite a flurry of last second schedule changes, LSU is still perfect on the year.

Bridgette Hogan/LSU Athletics

The opponents changed, but the results did not.

LSU cancelled their match with Houston in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, and did the same with UCF before Hurricane Irma made landfall in Florida. The match against Houston was replaced by a match against Austin Peay and as of now the meeting with UCF is only postponed.

Regardless, LSU continued their hot start to the season. The Tigers won a 2-0 contest on the road against George Washington from two goals in the first half from Tiyana Alexander and Zoe Higgins. Those two goals were all LSU needed but they had to survive a flurry of shots from the Colonials to preserve the clean sheet, 15 in total and 10 corner kicks although only six were on target.

LSU’s first goal came six minutes in when Alexander scored with her left foot just past the post after beating her mark. LSU doubled up George Washington in the 28th minute when Alexander sniped a pass to Lucy Parker into the box, where she finished on the first touch.

In the rescheduled match against Austin Peay, LSU went down early for the first time on the season. In the 28th minute LSU conceded a corner kick and the ball ended up loose in the box. In the madness, an errant kick was made and an own goal was scored to break LSU’s nearly 450 minute scoreless streak. LSU played from behind the rest of the half before storming ahead in the second half to get the 3-1 result.

Zoe Higgins equalized on the other side of the half in the 59th minute when she hammered a shot in the face of goal from close range. Eight minutes later Nicole Howard put LSU in front when she banged in a cracker from eight yards out. Alex Thomas sealed the comeback for the Tigers when she ran across the face of the box and curled in a 12 yard shot.

Both teams combined for 31 shots in the game, with LSU holding the advantage with 17, four of which were on goal, even with Austin Peay.

On Sunday night, LSU found themselves in a battle with Liberty. The match was an even lock all night. Both teams were nearly even in shots with Liberty holding a 8-7 lead thanks to a five shot first half, but LSU held the shots on target advantage with four to Liberty’s two.

The game was all but headed for extra time before Alexander played Parker up the field in the 86th minute. The Liberty goalkeeper Melody Layroe came off the line to make the play on the ball and Parker, knowing she had to make a call, lofted the ball in the air. The ball just kissed the underside of the crossbar and fell into the the net to put LSU ahead three minutes before the final whistle.

The last two matches weren’t as impressive as the ones that preceded them, but the results still count the same and LSU is off to a perfect 6-0 start, outscoring opponents 16-1 with the lone goal being the own goal in the Austin Peay match. One more win would tie for the school’s best start to the season, set back in 2008.

LSU closes out the non-conference slate Thursday night at home when they host Cincinnati at 6:00 before opening up conference play at home Sunday at 4:00 against Vanderbilt. The Vanderbilt match will be broadcast on the SEC Network while there is no television or streaming options for Cincinnati.