Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Alabama soccer rebounds, blankets MTSU

The Alabama soccer team rebounded from a tough Friday night loss at No. 20 Memphis by shutting out Middle Tennessee State 3-0 on a sunny Sunday afternoon at the Alabama Soccer Stadium in front of over 400 hundred fans. The Crimson Tide jumped on the board early and used a courageous defensive effort to shut out the Blue Raiders (3-4).

Stepping in for second team All-SEC goalkeeper Justine Bernier, who is currently training in Rome, Italy, with the Canadian national team, freshman Shanna Brooks recorded the first shutout of her college career and helped the Tide improve its record to 4-2 on the season.

            “It was pretty exciting,” Brooks said. “I think overall, we all played well as a team, and having my first career shutout is really exciting.”

            The Tide got on the board early when senior forward Victoria Frederick finished a deflection off the crossbar by Middle Tennessee goalkeeper Rebecca Cushing in the ninth minute of play.

Senior midfielder Rosaly Petriello nearly beat the keeper on a shot taken from outside of the box but Cushing deflected the ball into the crossbar and right to the feet of Frederick, who put it into the back of the net for her first goal of the season.

            Senior forward Brooke Rogers extended the Tide’s lead to two exactly a minute later, beating Cushing to the far post after making a run through two Blue Raider defenders and receiving a well-placed through ball from sophomore defender Ashley Willis.

            After going into halftime with the 2-0 lead, the Tide stepped up the pressure in the second half, outshooting Middle Tennessee 14-6 and forcing the Blue Raiders to remain on the defensive instead of attacking the goal throughout the sweltering afternoon.

            Rogers finished off the Blue Raiders in the 84th minute when she stole a ball deep in the Middle Tennessee defensive third and beat Cushing one-on-one to the near post for her second goal of the game. Rogers, who scored just two goals all of last season, has four goals through six games this year.

            Brooks had four saves in goal to preserve the shutout for the Tide, which finished with 20 shots. Middle Tennessee finished the game with 12 shots on the goal. Brooks improved her record to 2-1 in place of Bernier.

            Head coach Todd Bramble moved a step closer to a career milestone with the victory, earning his 99th career win.

“We showed a lot of improvement from last Sunday,” Bramble said of his team’s performance. “We were more opportunistic in front of the goal.”

The Tide’s goal differential of three is its largest margin of victory since a 5-1 victory over South Alabama on Sept. 6, 2009.

            Alabama returns to action this Friday with a home match against Texas Tech. The Red Raiders are 7-1 on the year, a record that includes seven shutouts of its opponents. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Alabama Soccer Stadium.

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