Trojan soccer drops two in a row

Scott McLendon

Staff Writer

The Trojan soccer team hit a two-game losing skid in the start to its season, falling at the hands of UT Martin and Ole Miss late in each game.

The second loss of the regular season for the Trojans (4-3, 0-0 Sun Belt) came when they traveled to Skyhawk Field to take on UT Martin. The score was tied at zero until UT Martin let in an own goal to give the Trojans the advantage in the 46th minute.

The Skyhawks clawed their way back into the game, stealing the game as sophomore forward Danae Kildaridou scored twice, including the game winner. Her 85th- and 89th-minute goals were enough to seal the Trojans’ loss.

The first goal was lofted into the box and hammered home before the Trojans could clear their lines. The second also came from a failure to clear the ball, this time via a corner kick.

“It was a very disappointing loss and performance from our team,” head coach Jason Hamilton said. “UT Martin outworked us, and our decision-making didn’t give us much of a chance to win. We wasted a lot of opportunities in this game, and when you don’t put the game away, you give the other team a chance.”

Senior forward Abby Reynolds fired four shots, the most of any Trojan. Freshman defender Maddie Brune of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and sophomore forward Brooke McKee each had two shots with one on target.

UT Martin rifled off 14 shots, with the visitors registering two fewer, and Troy forced eight corners to UT Martin’s four. Neither team shied away from a challenge as Troy was called for 10 fouls to the Skyhawks’ seven.

Troy nearly pulled off a defensive miracle against Ole Miss, facing 20 shots and seven on goal. However, the Rebels (4-3, 0-0 SEC) found the winner in an 87th-minute goal from senior forward Gretchen Harknett.

The Trojans took seven shots, four landing on target, and all of them saved by the Rebel keeper.  Reynolds had two shots with one on goal, as did McKee.

Junior goalkeeper Mikki Lewis of St. John’s, Florida, was busy all night and made six saves, but it wasn’t enough to keep the Trojans from taking the loss.

“I’m proud of our effort this game; we really did battle,” Hamilton said. “Our youth showed this weekend, giving up three goals on set pieces by leaving players unmarked in the box. You can’t win games that way.”

The Trojans will look to snap this losing streak as they travel to Macon, Georgia, to take on Mercer on Friday, Sept. 9. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m.

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