ORANGE BEACH, Ala. - No. 6 and top-seeded Razorback Soccer (9-1, 7-1 SEC) downed the No. 10 South Carolina Gamecocks (7-3, 6-2 SEC) on Thursday night in the semifinals of the SEC Tournament. Arkansas will make its fifth-straight appearance in the championship match and avenged a loss to the Gamecocks in last year's SEC Tournament final.
Two freshman, Caroline Brooks and Emilee Hauser, netted their first career goals to help the Razorbacks advance with a 2-1 victory over the Gamecocks. Arkansas will look to win its first SEC Tournament title in program history when it faces the winner of (3)Texas A&M/(7)Vanderbilt on Sunday, Nov. 22.
The Razorbacks outshot South Carolina, 15-13, and put eight of those on target. Razorback 'keeper Taylor Beitz finished with four saves on the game.
How It Happened
>> After the Razorbacks had a pair of shots deflected by the South Carolina defense near the top of the six-yard box in the 44th-minute, Brooks put a one-timed lefty shot to the far post for her first goal of the season.
>> In the 53rd-minute, Kayla McKeon laid off a ball for Hauser outside of the 18 and she put a left-footed blast that bounced in off the crossbar.
>> Gamecock forward Rylee Forster drove down the right flank and sent in a cross to the middle of the box. Ranya Senhaji collected the loose ball and sent in a goal at the 66th-minute mark.
The Run of Play
>> Kayla McKeon was able to get a shot off in front of goal in the 14th-minute, but the shot was blocked by the Gamecock defense before it got to the target.
>> South Carolina sent in a ball to the back post off a free kick at the 20-minute mark however the ball skipped past the outstretched leg of the Gamecock midfielder.
>> Brooks netted a goal right before half to give the Razorbacks a 1-0 lead heading into the locker room.
>> Anna Podojil's shot was deflected off the top post after she beat her defender in the 51st-minute. The Razorbacks weren't able to put away the rebound.
>> Moments later, Hauser would put Arkansas up 2-0 with her left-footed rip.
>> The Gamecocks netted their first goal of the match to slim the Arkansas lead to one with 25 minutes to play.
>> Podojil had a pair of shots in the 77th and 85th-minutes that just missed the left post and was pushed over the cross bar, respectively, as the Razorbacks continued to look for another goal.
The Razorbacks will face Vanderbilt in the championship match of the SEC Tournament. First kick in Orange Beach is scheduled for 1 p.m. CT on Sunday, Nov. 22, and the match will be broadcast on SEC Network.