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Spirited Effort by Soccer Falls Just Short Versus East Carolina

Adriana Garcia

Oct. 25, 2013

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HATTIESBURG, Miss. - It was one of the Golden Eagles' most spirited efforts of the year but Southern Miss fell a goal short in a 1-0 loss to East Carolina in Conference USA play.

The Golden Eagles (6-8-4, 0-6-2 Conference USA) were the more aggressive side but the Pirates (7-8-2, 4-4 Conference USA) benefitted from a single, 67th-minute goal from Kendal Frey and left the victors.

"I thought we played a solid game," Coach Mohammed El-Zare said. "We had our chances and gave ourselves opportunities to capitalize but we were unable to do so. It just came down to the fact that East Carolina capitalized on one of their chances. We commend them for a well-played match and congratulate them on their victory."

El-Zare had equal praise for his Golden Eagles, who outshot the Pirates 22-15 in the match and got seven shots on goal.

"Our girls are fighters," El-Zare said. "They will always give their best no matter the circumstances. We did not win today but we believe that we will have our time. Tomorrow is another day."

Spirits should indeed be high after the effort the Golden Eagles showed Friday.

Southern Miss produced some of the more exciting near-makes one is likely to see. Late in the first half, senior Danica Roberts received a beautiful inlet pass from junior Anya Koren and very nearly snuck the ball past East Carolina keeper Saundra Baron on a header.

Freshman Somer Jones and redshirt junior Missy Wentz also got off quality shots that were inches away from changing the course of the game.

On defense, freshman keeper Brittany Taylor (3-8-4) made 10 saves including three in the course of 15 seconds in the second half. Baron (7-8-2) finished with seven saves on the day.

Friday marked the second-to-last home match of the season for Southern Miss. The Golden Eagles wrap their 2013 home campaign Sunday at 1 p.m. with a game against Old Dominion.

It will be both Senior Day and Blake Nettles Day on the pitch as the Nettles family will be honored with a halftime presentation and Southern Miss' 10 seniors will be recognized after the match.

"We are excited to play one last match in front of our home fans on Sunday," El-Zare said. "Hopefully, we will be able to send our seniors away with a win."

The seniors to be honored on Sunday are defender Roberts, Jessica Bartlett, defender Danielle Beatty, midfielder Kimberly Belmont, forward Chelsea Cruthirds, midfielder Natasha Lombardo, defender Shelbi Moeller, defender Tara Nay, forward Mischa Tice and midfielder Zoe Vanderboegh.

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