Women's soccer upsets No. 13 Lady Vols

The No. 21 Commodores (13-2, 6-1 SEC) knocked off the No. 13 Lady Vols of Tennessee (8-5-1, 6-1 SEC) 2-1 in women's soccer Friday night. Vanderbilt is now tied for first place in the SEC East with Tennessee, and thanks to the win it holds the tiebreaker.

NASHVILLE-- Vanderbilt women's soccer head coach Ronnie Coveleskie Hill usually likes to see her star junior forward Lea Lafield (Dallas, Texas) take corner kicks to give her team a good chance to score off a set play.

Lafield didn't need a set play however, as she boomed a corner kick into the far-side of the net for the game-winning goal as the No. 21 Commodores (13-2, 6-1 SEC) knocked off the No. 13 Lady Vols of Tennessee (8-5-1, 6-1 SEC) 2-1 Friday night.

"Tennessee is a very good team," Hill said. "I'm so excited that the girls were able to rise to the challenge in what was really a pivotal SEC game. I'm just so thrilled. We're going to enjoy this win tonight, but there is no weight off my shoulders. We have to turn around and refocus on another good team in Georgia tomorrow."

The Vanderbilt victory was witnessed by a record 1,279 fans at the Vanderbilt Soccer Complex who came out for "Break The Attendance Night", part of Vanderbilt's Homecoming weekend.

"I can't say enough positive things about our fans tonight," Hill said. "It was an incredible crowd and just a fantastic atmosphere. I was so happy for our girls when they were able to jog across the field after the game to more than 1,000 screaming fans. That was incredible, and something I think they deserved that we have never seen since I have been here."

Lafield's goal came in the 63rd minute and was enough to lift the Commodores past UT. In the first half Lafield also earned an assist when she took a corner kick that found junior defender Kim Perkins (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) who put it in the back of the net to tie the game at 1-1.

"I can't say enough about how incredible Lea's goal was," Hill said. "She I'm not sure words can describe how happy I was with her goal. It was perfectly placed and just a world-class finish. I'm still speechless. Lea had a phenomenal game tonight. Anytime you can get an assist and a goal against the No. 13 team you're having a good night."

Tennessee struck first, in the 30th minute when Kristen Doukakis received a ball from Emily Redberg 10-yards out and zipped it past a diving Tyler Griffin. Griffin (Charlotte, N.C.), the junior goalkeeper for the Commodores rebounded from a tough 0-3 loss at Florida to earn six saves on seven shots on goal, and 16 shots in all from the Lady Vols.

It took VU just over 12 minutes to answer back when it earned a corner kick and Lafield found Perkins. It was Perkins first goal on the year. Lafield now has five goals and five assists, tied for the team lead in both categories, and she leads the team with 15 points.

Vanderbilt is now tied for first place in the SEC East with Tennessee, and thanks to the win tonight it holds the tiebreaker. The Commodores will be back in action on Sunday at 1 p.m. when they host Georgia (9-4-2, 3-3-1 SEC), who battled Kentucky to a draw Friday evening.


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