Mizzou soccer’s road woes continue in loss to Auburn

Despite looking evenly matched, Auburn defeated Missouri 1-0 in a battle of Tigers.

Despite a strong effort in what was by all accounts an even matchup, the Missouri women’s soccer team lost to No. 20 Auburn in enemy territory 1-0.

The game was deadlocked on the scoreboard and on the statsheet for the first 60 minutes of play. The two teams played aggressively and soundly for the game's opening sequence. Both of the offenses were able to get past the defenses’ back line and put up a respectable number of shots in the first half. However, Mizzou was able to put the ball on target more but was stifled by Auburn goalkeeper Sarah Le Beau’s three first-half saves.

The game went into halftime with the momentum shared equally between the two teams. It was anybody’s game. This feeling remained until Auburn defender freshman Karli Gutsche scored her first goal of the season in the 63rd minute to put Auburn up 1-0. Auburn would retain this lead for the remainder of the game.

Often, the final score does not accurately reflect the temperament of the game. But in this case, the final score does represent the two teams’ close proximity in ability. After the game, both teams are now 8-4 overall, while Auburn has a one game advantage on Mizzou in Southeastern Conference play. This, along with today’s game, has led me to believe that Mizzou is on the brink of being an extremely competitive program in the SEC, during both the regular season and postseason.

But it is hard not to recognize the team’s struggles on the road as a potential soft spot in the program. After this loss, Mizzou is now 1-3 on the road in the regular season, as opposed to a stellar 7-1 at home. If Missouri wants to take full advantage of their talents and potential as a team, it is paramount that they learn how to win on the road.

Missouri suffered a tough loss to Auburn tonight. However, much like their 1-0 loss at Notre Dame earlier in the season, it showed they could be competitive against the nation’s top teams. The key now is to turn that potential for success into results. Mizzou soccer continues their road trip on Oct. 6 against Texas A&M in College Station. The game will begin at 7:30 p.m. and is not being broadcast on national television.

Edited by Nancy Coleman | ncoleman@themaneater.com

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