The Troy soccer team lost to rival South Alabama 2-1 at the Troy Soccer Complex on Sunday.
After losing its first five games, South Alabama is now unbeaten in its last eight. It is a streak Troy couldn’t halt, despite gaining an early advantage at home against the Sun Belt’s top-seeded Jaguars.
The Trojans (4-8-2, 2-3 Sun Belt) scored at the beginning of the game thanks to Maddie Brune’s second goal of the season. In the 24th minute, Kiersten Edlund sent a free kick into the box, where Qarli Stone headed a shot toward the goal. Brune put away the ensuing rebound, giving Troy the lead.
Just two minutes later, South Alabama responded with Rio Hardy finding the back of the net. Following the equalizing goal, the Jaguars turned up the offensive intensity while the Trojans simultaneously dug in defensively.
Goalkeeper Haleigh Mercer racked up six saves in her 59 minutes of playing time, five of which came in the second half alone. South Alabama kept the pressure on all afternoon, getting off 17 shots with eight shots on net.
After a scoreless first overtime period, the game went to a second overtime. That was when Hardy made her second goal of the game. Tiina Trutsi shot, and Hardy cleaned up the rebound off the post to conclude the match.
“To lose in the manner that we did so close to the end of the game is a little soul-destroying for our players, but you lose some and you win some,” said Troy Head Coach Ged O’Connor. “Our team shape was excellent, our work rate was excellent …
“For us to play the way we did against a very good team, I can’t have anything but positive things to say about the way we played and our players.”
The Trojans will come back to play Friday against Little Rock at 7 p.m. at the Troy Soccer Complex.