March 29, 2012
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - In its third game of the spring season, the Lady Volunteer soccer team defeated in-state foe Lipscomb University 4-0 at Regal Stadium.
Building off their recent 2-0 win over Cincinnati, the Lady Vols looked poised and ready to compete. Senior midfielder Amy Harrison drew first blood by putting the Lady Vols on the board midway through the first half. The score however would remain the same heading into halftime.
At the half, head coach Brian Pensky explained to his squad that he wanted to see his team find its energy.
"I thought we were a little vanilla in the first half," said Pensky. "We were going through the motions and staying into the game, but not with enough urgency. Our theme at half was that we needed to treat this like it was a real game."
With another half still to play, Pensky also reminded his team how precious these spring games are.
"We do not get that many opportunities to play games in the spring where we get to test ourselves a little bit. Spring games are very important."
The second half would be a different story for the Lady Vols. With Tennessee virtually dominating possession, the Lady Vols clearly took their head coach's advice and immediately capitalized.
Senior Ali Hall cleaned up a loose ball in the box to extend the Tennessee lead to 2-0 with thirty-eight minutes remaining in the second half. Hall too noted the importance of spring games and the role they play as a mirror for the team's development over the spring.
"We have been getting better every single game," said Hall. "It is great that we have been continually building and building especially with players playing in new positions. We came out with a bang in the second half so tonight was just really great."
Shortly following Hall's goal, junior Caroline Brown got in on the action with a beautifully placed upper-ninety ball to extend the lead to 3-0. Finishing became the name of the game for the Lady Vols.
"Like I said to the team after the game, we scored some goals. I thought we created some good opportunities," Pensky said.
Placing the cherry on top of a Lady Vol victory, Hall struck again with the soccer equivalent of a buzzer-beater to hand Tennessee its fourth and final goal. Hall credits the team's overall strategy as the tool that helped her find the back of the net for the second time against the Lady Bison.
"We have been trying to keep the ball and stay in a quick rhythm playing fast," said Hall. "We want the other team to chase us because that is what gets them tired. From there we just want to go to the net. That is why we were able to score tonight."
The Lady Volunteer soccer team will be back in action on Saturday, April 14 at Regal Stadium for the annual Tennessee Collegiate Classic. Fans are encouraged to attend the event and support the Lady Vols as some of the state's top intercollegiate squads will face off in Knoxville.