OXFORD, Miss. – Despite the University of Arkansas’ best efforts, the Lady Razorbacks could not keep its undefeated Southeastern Conference record unblemished as it fell to the Ole Miss Lady Rebels in Oxford, Miss., on Sunday afternoon, 3-0.
The loss drops the Lady Razorbacks to 6-5-1 on the year and to 2-1-1 in SEC action while Ole Miss improves to 6-6-0 and 2-2-0 in conference play.
“Congratulations to Ole Miss on a fine first half,” Arkansas head coach Gordon Henderson said. “They came at us with everything that they had which we knew they would, unfortunately, we saved our worst performance for the year for that half. They thouroghly deserved to have a 3-0 lead at the half.
Arkansas fell behind early in the contest when Ole Miss capitalized on an opportunity just 7:09 into the contest. On the play, Kellie Renie was able to get her head on a cross by Karen Hall and pop a ball up over the outstretched hand of Carrie Dillsaver and into the goal.
Up to the game’s first score, Arkansas controlled much of the action in Oxford, making crisp passes around the Ole Miss defense, but following the score, the Lady Rebels flew all over the pitch and wore down the Lady Razorbacks who were coming off an emotional 2-1 overtime win from Friday evening.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for the way that we came out in the second half,” Henderson said. “We could have very easily folded and lost 8-0, but the team played with a lot of pride and heart and defended well. I am pleased with that. Make no mistake, Ole Miss is a fine side and that showed today. The ultimate thing is that to come away with a split on the road is huge.”
Down 1-0, it took the Lady Rebels and 25 minutes before they would score again despite a hounding defense that seemed to step in front of Arkansas passes at will. The second goal of the day came from Renie again, who this time hit a 30-yard rocket from the center of the field that sailed just under the crossbar and into the net.
For the Lady Razorbacks, Dillsaver was once again a major factor and despite allowing three scores, kept the Lady Rebels off the board numerous times as she made eight saves, and most of them in highlight reel fashion. Between her quick reflexes and ability to see the field, she was able to not just stop Ole Miss shots, but intercept numerous crossing efforts that would have certainly gone into the Arkansas net.
The Lady Razorbacks are back in action next Friday evening when they travel to Knoxville, Tenn., to take on the 21st-ranked Tennessee Lady Vols. For more information about Lady Razorback soccer or about Arkansas women’s athletics, please go to www.ladybacks.com.