MSU Soccer Heads To Kentucky Looking To Stay Unbeaten
Head coach Neil Macdonald's squad ran its record to 7-0-1, 0-0-1 in SEC play with a grueling 0-0 draw at South Carolina Friday night.
State's eight-game unbeaten streak matches the 2009 squad for the longest in school history.
The Bulldogs earned a valuable point in the SEC standings as they extended their school-record shutout streak to six-straight games.
Senior goalie Skylar Rosson made a season-high eight saves against the Gamecocks as she set the school's career record with her 12th blank sheet. She currently tops the SEC with an .893 saves percentage.
Mississippi State's defense has been stellar in the stretch, not surrendering a goal in 574 minutes. Rosson has recorded 545 consecutive minutes without a goal, a new MSU top mark.
The Bulldogs are tied with Tennessee for the SEC lead in goals allowed with three. The team's 0.36 goals-against average is second-best in the conference, while Rosson's 0.38 tally is third behind Carolina's Sabrina D'Angelo and Texas A&M's Jordan Day.
MSU's offense created several scoring chances, but came up short against a talented Gamecock back line that, like the Bulldogs, has allowed just three goals on the year.
Like the defense, State's offensive attack is off to one of the best starts in program history. Freshman Honeye Heydari and junior Elisabeth Sullivan have provided the spark as eight different players have found the back of the net.
Heydari has compiled a team-high 14 points so far in her rookie campaign. That tally is tied with Alabama freshman Katie Bourgeois for third in the conference. The Jackson, Tenn., native has scored five goals while assisting on four more.
Sullivan is tied with Heydari for the team goals lead, and she has assisted on three more for 13 points on the campaign.
The offense will be looking to give the Dawgs three valuable points against a Kentucky squad that is 6-1-0 following a 2-1 upset of 13th-ranked Florida in Friday night's league opener.
Friday's win came a week after UK posted a road upset No. 12 Louisville. The Wildcats closed the non-conference slate with a setback to Samford last Sunday.
Against the Gators, Kentucky tied on an Arin Gilliland 30th-minute penalty kick. Freshman Courtney Raetzman scored the winner, her first goal of the season, off a corner kick in the 47th minute.
Gilliland notched her second goal of the year to go along with two assists. Her six points are tied for the team lead with Natalie Horner, who has found the net a UK-best three times this season.
Kayla King has started all but one game in goal, stopping 15 shots while surrendering four goals.