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Game Day Soccer Blog

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Game Day Soccer Blog

8:57 PM — As the crowd filters out and television closes out the broadcast, we’ll say goodnight as well from Razorback Field. Remember, with the football team on the road tomorrow, no blog from Auburn. The game starts at 4 p.m., with audio from the Razorback Sports Network beginning at 2:30 p.m. The game is PPV. To watch on-line, order here at RazorVision. To watch at home on your television — contact your cable provider. Remember — only Arkansas and Alabama based fans can view the PPV per conference rules.

8:55 PM — And there’s the three whistles. Full time and the final score 3-1 to Alabama. Disappointing result for the Razorbacks who played with such tremendous pace early. The unfortunate back-to-back goals two minutes apart broke Arkansas’ momentum and cleared the way for the Tide. In the battle of 2-2 Western Division teams, Alabama now goes to 3-2 and Arkansas falls to 2-3.

8:53 PM — Patterson spins away from a midfielder, gets into the clear; sets it perfectly to her left for Schlief, but Gudmens charges out and guesses correctly to scoop up the shot. Any bit of loft and it’s over the keeper open net, but Schlief had to go with the power shot from the place she was at. Less than a minute to play.

8:52 PM — Moffitt puts all foot into it, and Gudmens lays all the way out to her left to prevent the goal. 2 minutes left.

8:50 PM — Arkansas has pulled the defense up high to add more pressure. Results in an off-sides trap for Bama. Restart for Arkansas at midfield allows all but Fawley to stay back. No attack this time, and the clock is now the enemy. 4 minutes to play down 3-1.

8:47 PM — O’Connor advances up the near touch, but she’s forced to cross before McVean or Patterson are in position. Harmless to the keeper. 7 minutes left.

8:45 PM — McVean brings the crowd to its feet with a long run from the mid field stripe. Bama defenders retreat the the 18, then pick her off to end the attack.

8:44 PM — Kathleen Paulsen turns on a loose ball and lets loose from 25 yards; keeper reaches for it but the ball just goes over the bar.

8:40 PM — Anders roars up the far touch line to press the attack from the back; quality slide tackle disrupts and yields an Arkansas throw in. Henderson makes three substitutions — Beth McVean, Kat Moffitt in particular. They force a quick attack, but Bama collapses back on it. 12 minutes left.

8:37 PM — O’Connor breaks away, but where she found even numbers earlier, she’s now doubled, with a third defender laying back. Bama has relaxed its front to protect the 3-1 spread. 16 left to play.

8:34 PM — Arkansas swarming Bama for possession, Tide content to play behind the ball to lock off opportunities.

8:32 PM — Now Alabama begins to dial it back a bit, and looks to play more possession to protect the 3-1 lead. 22 minutes to play.

8:28 PM — How a game can turn in two minutes. After being dominated for the opening 60 minutes, Alabama is not the aggressor, very energized on the front after the second goal and flying at Arkansas. King squares around on a shot from the far 18 corner, and catches side netting.

8:26 PM — Arkansas gets a foul, and on the free kick lofts toward the right side of the Bama goal. Patterson lunges for the cross, comes up empty and a little more distressing, either cramped or twisting her left leg. She takes a moment to stretch, the hobbles back to top speed.

8:25 PM — Williams comes off her line to face a challenge from Rogers, Williams misses and Rogers chips into an empty goal — 3-1 with 28 minutes left.

8:23 PM — Alabama overloads Arkansas for the first time tonight. The first shot from Petreillo ricochets off Williams’ gloves, and Corken drives it home for the 2-1 lead — just under 30 minutes left.

8:20 PM — Arkansas is regaining its possession touch, holding the ball in the Bama end until a solo breakaway. That ends in a penalty, and Arkansas marches back up field.

8:17 PM — Deegan crashes into Petterson and gets called for the foul; Bama player then pounds the ball away and gets the yellow card for unsportsmanlike conduct. After the free kick, Arkansas picks up a throw in and Henderson substitutes O’Connor back into the lineup.

8:16 PM — Clock now at 36 left, and play is getting rough. Home crowd is getting into the match.

8:14 PM — The game changes just like that. Alabama gets a breakaway that Williams comes off her line to challenge. She makes the first save, but the ball gets free. She battles with Corker, and gets carded. From the penalty spot, Petriello puts in the equalizer. Soft placement to the low left side. 1-1.

8:10 PM — Pardon me, but what is Bama’s back line thinking? Patterson is allowed to dribble forward without little opposition, ground given the whole way to the 18. She’s allowed time to compose her cross, and a brilliant back flick by Wentz sets Kailey Anders. She winds up and by the grace of Bear Bryant’s Ghost Alabama gets a save. Still 1-0.

8:08 PM — The momentum is wasted as Alabama returns with one of its longest possessions in the final third so far; poor Arkansas clearances keep the Tide a threat for too long before Rachel Smith dribbles out for Arkansas. The battle shifts to midfield until Wentz gets whistled and Bama has the free kick spot on the mid-field line.

8:06 PM — Not 17 seconds in and Sophie Wentz squares up from the top of the 18, just about two feet high for what a tone setter.

8:04 PM — The clock is reset and the crowd is calling the Hogs back onto the pitch. Arkansas will have the kickoff to begin the second half. Other stats — Arkansas 5 fouls to only 2 for Bama. Corners closed even at 3 each. Shots on goal were 8-4 Arkansas, with saves 5-1 to Alabama.

7:57 PM — In the halftime stats, Kelly O’Connor has as many shots as Alabama — 4. The sophomore has two on goal, that’s twice Bama. But Patterson has the only goal of the contest, the picture-perfect header in the fourth minute off the 40-yard free kick from Hallauer. Patterson has two shots, both on goal, and the one goal. Wilburn and Paulsen each also have a shot on goal.

7:52 PM — Here we go with the Shoot for Dough contest. The three youngsters have about a 20 yard shot. One to the left, two to the right. Second round, they move up the the 15 yard cone. And we have a winner — that’s $250 for that lucky young girl, and she gets to come back at the end of the year to shoot for $10,000.

7:49 PM — Patterson is away again makes one attempt that gets chipped up high by the Bama defense. That will be the last attack of the first half. We go to half time at 1-0 Arkansas.

7:47 PM — Clock winding down to 2:00 left in the first; Razorbacks still lead 1-0.

7:44 PM — Misshandled pass gives Arkansas a throw in deep on the Bama end. Gordon Henderson makes his first sub of the night, taking off O’Connor for Sophie Wentz. Bama advances, but the cross from Deegan is taken off the chest by Fawley. Arkansas’ counter results in a ball over the end line, and play has once again resumed almost exclusively on the north half of the pitch.

7:43 PM — Razorbacks head away a Bama attack, right to the foot of Deegan. She one-touches it at the goal just outside the 18, by little trouble for Williams.

7:41 PM — Clock stops as Bama gets its third corner, good breakaway that Hallauer stops with a slide tackle. It allows Bama to make a substitution. It’s worth noting that we are now at 8:00 left in the first half, and this was the first sub by either team. The pace on both sides has been high, but especially so by Arkansas.

7:39 PM — Another Williams punt is mis-headed by Bama, and away breaks O’Connor. It’s a foot race with the keeper that Gudmans wins. Crowd howls twice for hand ball in the ensuing mele, Wilburn takes a long shot that is handled by Gudmans to stop the pace momentarily.

7:35 PM — Deegan takes an ambitious shot from about 30 yards, just past the SEC logos painted on the field tonight. No danger. Bama keeps the ball in the Arkansas half, and Corker is able to line up a better shot, although wide and high. On the counter, Patterson finds O’Connor at the penalty spot — unlucky that the shot is right at Gudmens.

7:33 PM — Patterson smacks one off a Bama defender — Corner kick number four — near side flag. Lands right on the spot in the six, but no one in Red is close enough to make use of the play.

7:32 PM — Slight breeze tonight out of the south, and that aids a 30-yard cracker from O’Conner. It bends toward the crossbar, and Gudmens punches it over at the last moment. Corner Arkansas. Set piece to I believe Wilburn, back pass for a squaring Patterson. She cranks it toward the lower right corner and Gudmens makes her second straight save.

7:30 PM — Good high cross from Corker earns Bama its’ second corner. This time, Williams reaches high and misses. The ball lands dangerously in the six-box, but a long clearance — may have been Hallauer just guessing from the velocity — and Arkansas avoids the equalizer.

7:29 PM — Still 1-0 Arkansas, clock now at 20:00 in the first half. Whistle on Bama, restart near midfield for Arkansas.

7:28 PM — The home crowd is brought to "oooooooh" with a smart back heel flick from Patterson to break Schleif away on the left side. Keeper steps out to cover.

7:26 PM — Arkansas owns the midfield; another chance as Schleif breaks away. Her attempt stopped by a quick rush in by Lawson.

7:24 PM — Another Bama scare as O’Connor chips forward for Patterson, Bama’s Posey has the ball flick the wrong way and Patterson is on. Posey recovers just enough to frustrate Patterson’s shot, otherwise it would have been 1v1 and again likely 2-0. As it stands 24:00 on the first half clock with Arkansas up 1-0.

7:22 PM — First corner of the night for Arkansas as a routine Williams punt caroms off a Bama player over the end line. Wilburn sends it right across the face, and Bama’s keeper charges. It skips through her hands, but not where Arkansas can utilize the misplay.

7:19 PM — Bama gets its’ first threat as Petriello makes a solo breakaway. Williams has two choices — charge or defend. She opts for charge, and comes within a foot of paying for it. Williams dives at Petrillo right at the 18, and as she falls, Petriello drives for the goal. All Arkansas can do is watch, but the ball rolls wide left.

7:19 PM — Ball bounds over the Bama keeper Gudmens’ head, momentarily an open goal but the ball backspins into Gudmens’ outstretched hands. Oh so close to 2-0.

7:18 PM — Lawson and O’Connor tie up again. This is a classic back-forward showdown. This time, referee says advantage to Bama. O’Connor must be careful as she comes into tonight’s match with four cards.

7:15 PM — Arkansas is away again, this time O’Connor tracking down a long pass, but she’s disrupted by a high clet that grazes her in the cheek. Play on. Bama finally gets the ball downfield to force Britni Williams to actually pick one up. Off her long punt, Patterson whistled for contact and a restart to Bama. Tide advances and plays possession inside the 18, finally Smith gets the clearance. Off the throw, quality cross broken up by Hakim and goal kick for Williams.

7:14 PM — TV is getting its money’s worth. Patterson breaks away and is fouled inside the 18. Spot is off line to the goal and about 15 yards from the line. Arkansas goes for a set play around the wall, and the keeper Gudmens makes a great save.

7:10 PM — Bama little on the restart; Arkansas regains possession and moves forward with numbers. Fantastic overlaping passes through the midfield to bring the ball wide left side. Scheif thinks about it, the tap crosses to O’Connor who takes a stride to set then strokes a level shot for the far post. She’s just a foot outside.

7:08 PM — Big handful of O’Connor’s jersey sets up the first free kick of the night, and GOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLL ARKANSAS. Lauren Hallauer lofts it perfectly toward the back side of the penalty box. You could not have put the ball on a tee better for Lindsay Patterson. She crisply flicks it right along the crossbar and buries it on the opposite side of the net.

7:08 PM — Both teams going with the fresh-legged pace of a Friday evening match. Arkansas is playing

7:06 PM — Off the goal kick, Bama races down the near touch to earn the first corner kick of the night. The placement is less than effective, and Arkansas sprints away with possession. Teams now exchanging possession on the Arkansas half of midfield.

7:05 PM — Razorbacks breakaway on the near touch with Patterson advancing and O’Connor on her flank. The duo is in the clear, but a collision with Posey of Alabama upends Patterson — goal kick Bama.

7:04 PM — We’re underway, Alabama with the kickoff, deep into space on the far touch, returned near midfield by Arkansas.

6:59 PM — Our National Anthem, sung tonight by Miss Arkansas.

6:58 PM — Here is the starting lineup for Arkansas — across the back line, Rachel Smith, Clare Hakim, Megan Fawley, Lauren Hallauer; the midfield is Kim Schlief, Abbey Wilburn, Kathleen Paulsen, Beth McVean; on the top of the 4-4-2, Kelly O’Connor and Lindsay Patterson; between the pipes, Britni Williams.

6:56 PM — Clock to zeros and the field announcer begins the starting lineups.

6:54 PM — Razorbacks are back out of the locker room. The team always warms up in a different uniform — kit, to use the Euro term — then returns to the fieldhouse to change into the game unis. Since it is a Friday night, Arkansas will wear the dark uniforms; Alabama the light uniforms.

6:44 PM — Razorback goal keeper Britni Williams takes her warm-ups from keeper coach Steve Oliver. The sophomore will be a key tonight. She leads the SEC in goals against average, and ranks top 40 in the nation.

6:40 PM — Clock is winding down to about 16 minutes before introductions. Should be interesting tonight for Arkansas, notably with Kelly O’Connor. She took a pretty tough hit at Miss State. A missed tackle that went square on the plant foot.

6:30 PM — One of the fun things for fans at the soccer matches is the halftime contest. Sign up and if you kick the ball in the slot small slot on a specially built goal, you get $250 cash. This isn’t one of those halfcourt shot things. I’ve seen at least four people walk away with the cash this season.

6:20 PM — Razorbacks take the field for warm-ups.

6:06 PM — There will be streaming video on Sunday — FYI for fans and family.

6:03 PM — REMEMBER — there is no live video stream tonight from soccer because the game is live on Fox Sports Net. Check your local cable listings, but it will be on FSN South, FSN Southwest. Kickoff is 7 p.m. tonight on the telecast.

6:00 PM — The shadow from the stadium is about 2/3rds across the pitch. Evening sun can be a great challenge at the field.

5:55 PM — Gordon’s finished. Suspect the talent will sit down with Alabama’s coach later. Pete Pranica is also working with Jenn on the broadcast.

5:50 PM — On the far side of the pitch, Arkansas head coach Gordon Henderson sits down with the talent to do a prematch interview. From my vantage point in the Razorback Field press box, I’d say that’s Jenn Hildredth sitting down with Gordon.

5:48 PM — The TV crew is settled in for tonight’s match. This is Arkansas’ first appearance on the SEC TV package this year, and the first in two seasons from Fayetteville.

5:45 PM — Good evening and welcome to Razorback Field, located on the southeast corner of the Valley of the Razorbacks. The blog arrives at soccer for the first time this season. Gates will be opening in about 15 minutes.



Sports Category : Soccer (W)