Valdosta, GA - Valdosta State suffered the team’s first home loss in its history Wednesday night to one of the best NAIA programs in the country, Thomas. After a Rebecca Miller goal early in the match, the Nighthawks scored with just two seconds left in the first half to tie the match. In the 75th minute, Thomas would take the lead, 2-1, finish the match at that score.
The loss drops Valdosta State to 11-5 on the season, but the Blazers are still in play for a share of the Gulf South Conference Regular Season Title with a victory over West Georgia at 11 a.m. Saturday at the VSU Soccer Complex. In their inaugural season, the Blazers even have a shot at snagging the top seed in the GSC Tournament.
Wednesday night, however, was a somber night for VSU as the Blazers outshot Thomas, eight to four, but could not pull out the victory. The Nighthawks were efficient, scoring two goals on three shots on goal while the Blazers put in one on four shots on goal.
Miller scored the lone goal for VSU early off an assist from Emily Cooper. Miller approached from the right side and placed the ball in the top left corner of the goal for her team leading fourth goal of the season.
Just before the half ended, Alyssa Tresch scored off assists from Alyssa Denton and Jenny Hernandez to finish in the bottom right of the goal. The second half was played to a stalemate for 30 minutes, until Kelsea Whitaker scored the game winner off a Breanna Pullara free kick from far outside the box.
Blakely McClellan and Caroline Moore were the other Blazers in addition to Miller to put a shot on goal. Moore’s came with just 46 seconds left and just barely missed the goal. The Thomas keeper was able to put her fingertips to the ball to force it into the crossbar.
Nonetheless, Valdosta State’s conference record stands at 5-1 with an opportunity to move to 6-1 with a win over West Georgia at 11 a.m. Saturday. Continue to check back at www.vstateblazers.com for updates on the Valdosta State’s first ever appearance in the GSC Soccer Tournament.