Auburn soccer hopes to bounce back from its first loss of the season as it takes on Georgia in the Tigers' Southeastern Conference opener on Friday.
Auburn’s record has a blemish on it for the first time all season following the 2-1 loss to No. 1 Florida State on Sept. 12. With the loss, Auburn has ended its longest winning streak in program history at 10.
Georgia comes into the game on a six-game winning streak of its own. The Bulldogs most recently defeated the College of Charleston, 1-0 on visiting turf. Following that win, senior defender Cecily Stoute earned SEC Defensive Player of the Week honors when the conference announced them the following Monday.
As the Tigers prepare to take on the Bulldogs in a version of the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry there are opportunities make a difference on both sides.
Anna Haddock (MID)- Sophomore Anna Haddock is a part of everything this team does. Haddock links defense to attack and attack to goals. The sophomore gets the team moving. In the seven games this season, Haddock is averaging a goal or assist every 78.75 minutes this season. If Auburn is to win, she needs to continue that mark.
Maddie Prohaska (GK)- Sophomore goalkeeper Maddie Prohaska needs to continue to be the rock at the back that she was last season. In Prohaska’s freshman season, she boasted a 0.843% save percentage over 17 games. This season she’s 14 points behind that mark at a 0.7% save percentage. If she could improve that percentage with SEC play coming around, the Tigers would have a power player.
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Mollie Belisle (FWD)- Graduate student Mollie Belisle has been on fire this season scoring 10 goals in eight games. That’s a goal every 72 minutes. Auburn’s defense will need to step up and close her down to stop the Georgia attack.
Abby Boyan (MID)- Senior Abby Boyan has been that cog in the midfield for Georgia. Much Like Haddock, Boyan contributes both with goals and assists. The senior has totaled four goals and seven assists. Boyan’s scores or assists every 65.45 minutes. Haddock and the Auburn midfield will need to neutralize her.
Areas to watch
Midfield- Whoever dominates the midfield will win this game. Whichever team controls the midfield will control the game and ultimately the final score line in this game. Which star midfielder will stand out? Haddock or Boyan? One of the two is destined to make their mark on this game.
Auburn Defense- The Tiger defense has let in few costly goals early in matches this season. The matchup against No. 1 Florida State jumped out to an early lead in the first 30 seconds of the match. One the Tigers would come to regret as they fell 2-1. Will the Auburn defense be ready to go from the start or will Georgia capitalize on early minutes of the game?
Look for these areas and players to shine when No. 12 Auburn takes on Georgia on Friday at the Auburn Soccer Complex at 6:30 p.m. CST.
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