The Murray State soccer team fell 4-0 in a hard-fought contest with Vanderbilt in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Nashville, Tennessee.
The back-to-back Ohio Valley Conference tournament champion Racers finished their season with an overall record of 13-5-1. Following the win, Vanderbilt will head to Waco, Texas, as they advance to the second round of the NCAAs.
Vanderbilt proved to control the pace during the first half, as the Commodores logged a trifecta of goals on six total shots compared to the Racers’ one. The Dores took a 3-0 lead into the half.
The Racers came out aggressive after the halftime break, attempting to gain control of the offensive tempo early. Murray State had two prime scoring chances early in the second stanza. Following a precision pass by Rebecca Kubin, Emma Heise split two defenders and sent what hoped to be the Racers’ first goal of the night in the 46th minute toward the net. The Commodore keeper Lauren Demarchi was in perfect position to make the save on Heise’s shot, conserving the VU advantage.
Minutes later, Miyah Watford came up with a scoring opportunity of her own in the 51st off another dime from Kubin. Unfortunately, her shot also sailed directly into the hands of the Vanderbilt goalkeeper to hold the Commodores lead at 3-0.
Vanderbilt upped the ante by adding in the final score of the contest with just 8 minutes left to seal the 4-0 victory for the Commodores. VU ended the night with 13 shots while the Racers finished with five. Senior goalkeeper Alex Steigerwald logged three saves on the evening.
After their third NCAA appearance in four seasons, the Racers, under head coach Matt Lodge, look to pick up their OVC and NCAA hopes again next year.