The Tennessee soccer team came back home from their Northeast road trip and executed in prominent fashion.
The Lady Vols (4-1) defeated the Southeastern Louisiana Lady Lions 2-0 in Thursday night’s match at Regal Stadium.
Tennessee started the game with freshman Lindsey Romig in the goal. Romig played for 77 minutes in last week’s 3-0 win over Columbia.
Southeastern Louisiana started the game with a corner kick in the 12th minute, but could not convert.
The Lady Vols added their own corner kick in the 18th minute, which set up two shots for MA Vignola. Both were saved by the Lady Lions’ keeper, Nadine Maher.
Tennessee pushed hard on offense yet again, getting two corner kicks in the 25th minute, but neither lead to a score.
Sophomore forward Amy Thompson left the game in the 26th minute with an injury and was replaced by freshman Alicia Donley.
Sophomore transfer Mackenzie George, who came to Knoxville by way of California Polytechnic Institute, scored the first goal of the evening in the 40th minute. The score also marked her first in her Tennessee career.
“I lost the ball a few times there and I was about to stop, and then I saw the goal and some space and I just took it.” George said of the Lady Vols’ first goal of the night. “It’s always the best feeling ever to come together with your teammates after.”
Fellow transfer Michelle Alozie had a penalty kick in the 44th minute, but her shot went just outside to the left to keep the score at 1-0.
At halftime, Tennessee lead the Southeastern Louisiana 1-0, but the Lady Vols managed 10 shots in the first half with five shots on frame. Vignola lead the fray with three of those shots on frame. Tennessee also tallied four corner kicks.
The Lady Vols swapped goalkeepers at halftime, substituting sophomore Charli Pogany in between the sticks.
Through the first half the Lady Lions had four saves, all recorded by Maher, but could not get off a single shot due to Tennessee’s defense in the first half.
To start off the second half, Vignola and Isabella Cook had a shot each in the 47th and 49th minute, respectively.
The Lady Vols had two corner kicks in the 59th minute, but again came up empty..
In the first 15 minutes of the second half, the Lady Vols quickly added five shots to their total on the night.
Alozie scored Tennessee’s second and final goal of the evening in the 79th minute to put her team up comfortably 2-0 late. The goal was assisted by Donley.
“I saw Alicia made a really good run there,” Alozie said of her first goal of the evening. “I just needed to make sure my run was there and I went where the ball was.”
Tennessee had one last corner kick in the 80th minute, and one final shot was taken by Alozie in the 87th minute.
Southeastern Louisiana’s keeper notched nine saves on the evening, but the Lady Lions were unable to get a shot off against Tennessee’s defense.
Tennessee’s offense put up an impressive 18 shots. That high powered offense was lead by Vignola, who had eight shots, five of which were on frame.
“We had some good chances there. Their keeper made some big plays,” head coach Brian Pensky said of his team’s shot count. “My mind was forgetting about that, frustrated that it took us so long to get that first goal. 18 though? We’ll take it."
“Her speed, her speed with the ball, and her ability to ball strike are the best on our team,” Pensky said of Vignola. “Anytime she’s on the ball in the final third she’s a threat to score a goal.”
The 20th ranked Lady Vols are set to host Cincinnati on Sunday. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. at Regal Stadium.