Hoosiers Match Best Start in Program History with 2-1 Win At Mercer
Sept. 6, 2009
ATHENS, Ga. - The Indiana women's soccer team fell behind for the first time all season late in the first half against the Mercer Bears (2-2-1), but senior Kelly Lawrence led the Hoosiers' (5-0-0) comeback with a pair of assists in the second half as Indiana claimed a 2-1 win in its first road game of the year.
"This was a great win for us," Indiana head coach Mick Lyon said. "Our win on Friday against Florida was tremendous and this win made the entire weekend very special because Mercer is a very good team and will win a lot of games this year."
With the win, the Hoosiers match the best start in program history, which was set in 1994 and then equaled again in 2000. It is also the best start for the Hoosiers in the eight years under the direction of head coach Mick Lyon. Dating back to last season, the Hoosiers have won eight games in a row, the longest winning streak under Lyon. The longest winning streak in program history is 14 games, which spanned the final nine games of the 1993 season and the first five games of the 1994 season.
The Bears got on the board first in the 40th minute when Kate Alderman found Sara Elliot for a header that beat IU keeper Lauren Hollandsworth to give Mercer a 1-0 lead just before halftime.
Lyon and the Hoosiers made some adjustments at halftime and came out and controlled play in the second half. They were finally able to get the equalizer in at the 63:51 mark when Lawrence send a free kick in towards the box that found the head of Carly Samp, who deposited it past the Mercer keeper for her second goal of the season.
"We had a good talk at halftime," said Lyon. "We knew that Mercer played about as well as they could in the first half so we knew that if we came out and played as well as we could in the second half we would be in good position to win the game, and we did, which was excellent to see."
The game-winning tally would come just over eight minutes later at 72:10, and once again it was Lawrence in the middle of it. The native of Chigwell, Essex, England, made a long 70-yard dash up the sideline and got into position on the right side before sending a low cross to the six-yard box that landed perfectly on the foot of senior Christie Kotynski, who one-touched the ball into the goal for her first goal of the season and 11th of her career. It is also her fifth career game-winning goal, which is the second most among active players.
Hollandsworth finished the match with three saves and earned her second win of the year and 18th of her career.
Indiana will continue the non-conference portion of its early season schedule with a trip to New York City area for a pair of games next weekend. The Hoosiers will take on Hofstra at 7 p.m. on Friday night and then St. John's at 1 p.m. on Sunday.
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