Another productive night of offense gave No. 20 Ole Miss its first Southeastern Conference win of the season as the Rebels claimed a 4-1 win over Georgia in the league home opener Thursday night.
The Rebels (8-1-1, 1-1 SEC) wasted no time getting in the scoring column, taking a 2-0 lead within the first 10 minutes of play. They would go on to add two second-half scores, while Georgia (4-5-1, 0-2 SEC) found the net late in the match.
As has been the theme all season, four different Rebels were responsible for the goals, including freshman Channing Foster’s team-leading 10th of the season, as well as Julia Phillips’ third, Grace Johnson’s second, and CeCe Kizer’s ninth of the year.
Just four minutes in, at the 4:35 mark, Kizer played a ball in from the far corner of the box, before Foster flicked it in left-footed from five yards out putting the Rebels in front 1-0. Just six minutes later (10:33), Mary Kate Smith made a deep run to the end line, before Kizer got a foot on it in the box, and Phillips recovered for a high punch in from seven yards out to extend the lead to 2-0.
That score held through the halftime break as the two sides finished fairly even in the statistical columns with seven shots for both teams, and a combined five saves in the opening 45 minutes, including three from Marnie Merritt.
Coming out of half, freshman Grace Johnson collected a free ball inside the box and found the net left-footed at the 56:15 mark, pushing the advantage to 3-0. Georgia would score its lone goal in the 70th minute when Mariel Gutierrez found the net on the far corner.
Then, at the 77:28 mark, Kizer, with two assists in her back pocket already, took advantage of a free ball in the box off a Gabby Little pass, and made the keeper pay, capping the scoring at 4-1 on the game.
She and Phillips finished with three shots each as the Rebels collected 14 total on the night. The Bulldogs managed 10, with only three coming in the second half. Merritt closed the night with three saves.
- The Rebels snapped a four-year streak to Georgia with the win on Thursday, which marked the first victory over the Bulldogs in Oxford in 11 years (2006).
- With the second-ranked scoring offense in the country coming into the match, Ole Miss posted at least a four-score performance for the sixth time this season.
- It also marked the first four-goal performance in SEC play since Oct. 25, 2015 when the Rebels won 4-3 at No. 23 Texas A&M, and the first four-goal SEC outing at home since 2013 in a 5-1 win over Mississippi State.
- For the second-straight game, goalkeeper Marnie Merritt tied her season high with three saves, all of which came in the opening period.
- Freshman Channing Foster and junior CeCe Kizer continue their footrace in goal production, as Foster secured her team-leading 10th of the year, and Kizer collected her ninth.
- Mary Kate Smith also collected her sixth assist off Phillips’ goal, which is second-best on the team behind Kizer’s seven.
No. 20 Ole Miss hits the road for Fayetteville, Arkansas, this weekend to take on the Razorbacks Sunday at 4 p.m. on SEC Network.
Keep up with all the latest news and information on the Rebels by following Ole Miss Soccer on Twitter at @OleMissSoccer, on Facebook at Facebook.com/OleMissSoccer, and on Instagram at Instagram.com/
Courtesy of Ole Miss Sports
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