Women’s Soccer Sets Sights on SEC Opener Against Kentucky 9/26/02

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Now that the losing streak is behind them, the Vanderbilt women’s soccer team can now focus on its first Southeastern Conference game of the 2002 season, which is against rival Kentucky at 5:30 p.m. (EST) Friday in Lexington, Ky.

The Commodores (2-4) are coming off a difficult weekend of competition, as they went 1-1 against two of the best teams in the state of Texas. Last Friday, Vanderbilt fell to No. 4-ranked Texas 1-0 in front of a crowd of over 3,400 people in Austin. The story of the game was that the Commodores were called for 26 fouls and four yellow cards, while the Longhorns were issued only seven infractions and zero yellow cards.

Vanderbilt head coach Ronnie Hill and her team rebounded on Sunday by defeating Southern Methodist in overtime 2-1 in Dallas. Forward Lizzy Johnson scored the game-winning goal following an assist from forward Jen Talavera 51 seconds into the first overtime. Entering the contest, the Lady Mustang led the all-time series 5-2-1. Vanderbilt’s victory on Sunday ended a three-game losing streak.

The annaul meeting with Kentucky is one of Vanderbilt’s most stories rivalries. Besides Arkansas, the Commodores have played no other team in the SEC more than the Wildcats. When these two teams square off on Friday, it will be their 17 meeting. This series dates back to October 18, 1991, when Vanderbilt defeated Kentucky, 6-0. The Commodores lead the all-time series 10-6; however, the Wildcats have won the last three meetings.

Scouting the Wildcats

Kentucky enters Friday’s game with an overall record of 4-3, but has lost three of its last four games and starting its season off at 3-0. The Wildcats are coming off a difficult 2-1 loss to Southeast Missouri State. Kentucky dominated every aspect of the game except for the final score, as it outshot Southeast Missouri State 12-3 and also had five more corner kicks.

Looking past the recent struggles of the Wildcats, they still have one of the most storied traditions in the SEC. In his previous 10 years, UK head coach Warren Lipka has amassed an overall record of 122-77-10, which includes a record of 44-21 in SEC play.

The Wildcats bring a balanced offense to the table, as 11 players have tallied at least one goal or assist on the season. In seven games this season, junior forward Elizabeth Ramsey leads the team with three goals and two assists for eight points. Ramsey made her presence felt as a serious offensive threat in her first two years at UK, as she recorded 15 goals and 21 assists for 51 points.

Junior Kara McCue has established herself early on this season, as she has scored twice, both of which were game-winning goals. For Lipka’s squad, five other players have tallied one goal apiece.

Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Liz Butler has been solid in net for the Wildcats. Butler has started and played every minute of the season in goal for Kentucky. She is established a 1.12 goals against average in the seven games, while tallying 17 saves and two shutouts.

Quick Points Heading into Kentucky Game

• Vanderbilt leads the all-time series with Kentucky 10-6; however, the Wildcats have won the last three meetings.
• The Commodores are 6-3 all-time in SEC openers.
• Vanderbilt, Kentucky and Arkansas have been since the league’s inception back in 1991.
• The Commodores next nine games are against SEC opponents (four home games, five road games).
• In the 17 meetings between Vanderbilt and Kentucky, the Commodores have outscored the Wildcats, 35-21.




Vanderbilt Athletic Department
2601 Jess Neely Drive
Nashville, TN 37212
615-322-GOLD (4653)