Memphis Scores Late to Defeat Women's Soccer, 2-0, in C-USA Semifinals


Nov. 7, 2008

Final Stats

Box Score in PDF Format

HOUSTON, Texas (UCFAthletics.com) - Ashley Berra's goal in the 81st minute ended a scoreless deadlock and Memphis went on to defeat the No. 22 UCF women's soccer team, 2-0, Friday in the Conference USA Championship semifinals hosted by Rice. The Knights saw their record fall to 13-5-3 as they will hope for an at-large berth into the NCAA Tournament when the 64-team field is announced Monday night at 8 p.m. on ESPNews.

The No. 2 seeded Tigers improved to 14-4-2 on the year and will now face No. 1 seed East Carolina in the finals Sunday at 2 p.m. ET. Memphis walked away with a 20-9 lead in the shot department vs. the Knights with six of them taken by Vendula Strnadova.

UCF freshman keeper Aline Reis (Campinas, Brazil) completed her evening with nine saves, which tied for the second most she had in a game all year. She moved her 2008 total to 96 saves, placing her sixth on the UCF single-season chart.

Reis saw plenty of action in the first half, where Memphis fired off 11 total shots, forcing the UCF keeper to make four saves. The Tigers' offense was able to creep into the box several times during the opening frame but was unable to record the important first goal. For the Knights, junior Becca Thomas (Burlington, Wash.) sent two attempts on net, yet Elise Kuhar-Pitters was in position to make both saves as the teams went into the break with a 0-0 tie.

When the second half opened, Reis again had to come up big early, making a diving save three minutes in off a shot by Lizzy Simonin. The next best scoring chance by either team came in the 68th minute when Thomas sprinted in towards a loose ball near the top of the box and ripped a shot towards the far right post. However, Kuhar-Pitters reached out to haul it in and add to her save total. She would go on to post five saves in the semifinal contest.

With time beginning to wind down in regulation, Memphis received a free kick close to the goal and took advantage. On an assist from Melissa Smith, Berra found a shooting lane on the right side of the box and squeaked it by Reis for the eventual game-winner. Adding some insurance, Krista Turner scored her first of the year in the 87th minute to seal the Tiger win.

For the latest news on the Knights, log on to UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.

Postgame Notes
No. 3 UCF (13-5-3) - 0
No. 2 Memphis (14-4-2) - 2
Goals: MEM Ashley Berra (3) 81st, MEM Krista Turner (1) 87th
- It was the second-straight year Memphis defeated UCF in the C-USA Championship. Last year, the Knights still went on to earn an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament.
- Becca Thomas paced the Knights with three shots Friday, all of which were on goal.
- Memphis held a 4-3 lead in corner kicks.
- The all-time series between UCF and Memphis is now tied at 3-3-0.
- Aline Reis' season-high for saves in a game was 10 at Pacific Sept. 5.
- Reis jumped quickly into sixth place in school history with 96 saves. But if UCF's season continues, she will have some work to do to break into the top five as Alyssa O'Brien holds that spot with 107 stops in 1997.