Tennessee leads the all-time series over Georgia by an 11-7-0 total, but is just 2-3-0 against the Bulldogs over the last five meetings between the two programs. UT has never had a great deal of success at the UGA Soccer Stadium, owning just a 2-6-0 all-time mark. The Big Orange lost in its last two visits (2007 & 2009) to Athens, Ga. Georgia is 5-3-1 at home this season.
The Bulldogs enter Friday night's match with a 12-4-2 overall record and a 6-2-2 Southeastern Conference record to rate fourth overall in the league standings. UGA owns SEC wins over South Carolina (2-1, 2OT), Arkansas (1-0), Mississippi State (4-3, 2OT), Ole Miss (3-0), Vanderbilt (2-0) and Kentucky (2-1). Georgia is currently riding a six-match unbeaten streak (4-0-2) after recent ties against Auburn (0-0, 2OT) and Alabama (2-2, 2OT).
Sophomore MF Alexa Newfield leads the SEC in scoring with a staggering 15 G to go along with 8 A for 38 points. She leads a contingent of eight Bulldog players that own at least two scores each in 2011. Senior F Ashley Miller has 4 G and 2 A for 10 points. Junior GK Ashley Baker is 12-4-2 with five ShO, a 1.08 GAA and 73 saves over 18 matches played.
Georgia currently rates fifth in the SEC in scoring with 36 goals for a 2.00 goals-per-match average, while Tennessee is tied for third with 38 scores for a 2.11 GPM mark. The Lady Vol defense has permitted just 15 goals in 2011 for a 0.83 goals allowed-per-match average, while UGA is tied with LSU for fourth at 1.17 GPM, having allowed 21 goals in 18 contests.
Tennessee Soccer Free Kicks
Tennessee is the only Southeastern Conference school to boast two players with 10 goals and at least 25 total points (Caroline Brown, 10 goals and 28 points/Emily Dowd, 10 goals and 27 points)
The combination of Tennessee's backline (most frequently made up of freshman Allie Sirna, junior Ali Hall and sophomores Tori Bailey and Caroline Capocaccia) and freshman goalkeeper Julie Eckel have worked to turn in one of the best defensive seasons in Lady Vol soccer history. UT has permitted just 15 opponent scores over its opening 18 matches, equaling the previous best goals allowed mark established by the 2004, 2006 & 2007 Big Orange defenses.
Time before the annual SEC Tournament in Orange Beach, Alabama, is growing short and teams are jockeying for one of eight spots in the league's showcase event slated for Nov. 2-6. As of Oct. 24, Tennessee sat fifth overall in the standings, with one match remaining, and could finish anywhere between third or seventh, having already secured its 14th consecutive berth in the SEC Tourney. With a win over Georgia on Oct. 28, UT could climb as high as the third seed if Florida loses to South Carolina or be the fourth seed if Florida beats or ties SC. A Lady Vol dead-lock against the Bulldogs would secure the fifth position for the Big Orange in the annual SEC Tournament.
The latest NCAA Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) for women's soccer has been released (10/26) and the Southeastern Conference boasts seven of the top 50 teams in the listing. Florida leads the way at #8, followed by Auburn (#20), Kentucky (#23), TENNESSEE (#27), LSU (#28), South Carolina (#33) and Georgia (#34). The RPI is one of the factors utilized by the NCAA in handing out tourney seeds and slots in the annual NCAA Field of 64. It consists of three factors that are weighted as follows: a team's Division I winning percentage (25%), opponent strength of schedule (50%) and opponents' opponent strength of schedule (25%).