Photography: Dakota Sumpter

Auburn's Soccer Tigers Break Through And Head Into Elite Eight

The Auburn soccer team had to beat the Florida Gators for a second time in Gainesville this season and did that on Sunday to make AU history.

Brooke Ramsier (above) has been a key performer for the Tigers in postseason play.

Gainesville, Fla.--With a 3-1 victory over the Florida Gators on Sunday the Auburn Tigers advanced to the Elite Eight round of the NCAA Women’s Soccer Tournament for the first time in school history.

Coach Karen Hoppa’s Tigers improved their record to 17-6 for the season. 

Next up for the Tigers is a match at Southern Cal at 3 p.m. CST on Friday with the winner going to the Final Four.

"I thought we fought hard and defended really well," Hoppa said. "I didn't think we played a great first half, but we scored a goal and went into halftime we a lead was great because I knew we could play better.

"In the second half I thought we did a better job and way a great game Kristen (Dodson) had with the breakaway to draw the PK (penalty kick)  and then she put the game away with five minutes by chipping it over the keeper."

The Tigers scored the only goal of the first half on their only shot on goal in the period as senior Brooke Ramsier angled a rebound into the net.

Auburn moved ahead 2-0 after Kristen Dodson was fouled from behind on a breakaway, drawing a red card for the Gator defender. Bri Folds was called on to take the penalty kick and beat the keeper with a shot down the middle at the 61:28 mark.

However, the home team quickly narrowed the margin back to a single goal as Brooke Sharp scored.

Kristen Dodson added an insurance goal for the Tigers on a long range shot over the head of the Florida keeper at the 84:59 mark.

Unfortunately for the Tigers, Dodson was fouled and injured in the closing minutes. "Kristen is good," Hoppa said. "I talked to one of the doctors who was with us and he thinks she will be okay for Friday. Our medical staff is going to take good care of her."

For the Tigers it was the second time they have beaten the Gators this year, both in Gainesville. In the regular season Auburn won for the first time on the Gators’ home field with a 3-0 decision.

Auburn has outscored its opponents 11-1 in three NCAA Tournament victories.


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