/Troy soccer struggles on opening season road games

Troy soccer struggles on opening season road games

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Michael Shipma

Staff Writer

The Troy soccer team fell 2-0 in its season opener to LSU on Friday, Aug. 22.

The Trojans got off 11 shots in head coach Jason Hamilton’s debut, the most against an SEC opponent since 2011. The Tigers scored early with a goal by freshman forward Jorian Baucom 48 seconds into the match.

The Tiger squad was able to maintain possession of the ball and controlled the tempo for the rest of the game, but LSU was unable to score again in the first half.

The Trojans threatened to score in the 16th minute with a shot from junior midfielder/forward Louise Chang, but were unable to generate any more offense in the first half. Freshman goalkeeper Mikki Lewis helped keep the Trojans in the game with a couple of saves in the 22nd and 26th minutes.

Coming out of halftime, the Tigers were able to score again with a goal off a deflection from junior midfielder Natalie Gomez-Junco in the 58th minute.

A shot by senior midfielder Jane Latif in the 77th minute missed wide, and the Trojans were unable to score.

However, head coach Jason Hamilton was positive after the loss.

“We definitely held our own against a very good team,” Hamilton said. “We had some extremely good moments in the game where we were able to create chance. Unfortunately, in the first moments of the game our nerves got the best of us.”

There was a special moment for the Trojan squad in the 39th minute of the match when senior Kailani Decock came on as a substitution. It was the first time she had played in over a year after battling Hodgkin’s lymphoma during last season. She played 18 minutes in the match.

The match also marked the debuts for freshmen Mallary Hedden and Natalie Melillo.

“The freshmen that got time in this game were outstanding,” Hamilton said. “Mikki made some really good saves, Mallary started and held her own with some very good forwards. Natalie came on and gave us some quality minutes. I couldn’t have been happier with the way that they played.”

The Trojans lost against Louisiana Tech 4-2 on the second half of their season opener road trip on Sunday, Aug. 24.

Troy held the lead, scoring twice in 10 minutes. However, the Lady Techsters turned the tables in the 36th minute. Louisiana Tech scored three more times during the game.

The Trojans played Alabama State at home at the Troy Soccer Complex on Tuesday, Aug. 26, and won 6-0. Check out tropnews.com for the full home game story.