UF soccer moves to SEC semifinals


Published: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, November 1, 2012 at 12:32 a.m.

ORANGE BEACH, Ala. — Senior All-American Erika Tymrak's late free-kick goal gave the No. 10 Gators (15-4-1, 11-2 SEC) the margin they needed Wednesday, advancing the team to Friday's Southeastern Conference Tournament semifinals. Florida took a 2-1 win over Mississippi (13-9, 5-8 SEC) in the third match of Wednesday's action at the Orange Beach Sportsplex.

The Gators now move ahead to SEC Tournament semifinal action for the seventh consecutive year and for the 16th time in the program's 18-year history. Florida will face the winner of the Missouri-Kentucky match Friday at 7:30 p.m. and the match can be viewed on ESPN3. No. 12 Texas A&M advanced to face Auburn in the other semifinal. A&M defeated South Carolina 1-0 in overtime and Auburn took a 5-4 penalty kick decision over Tennessee on Wednesday.

After the afternoon matches both went to overtime after scoreless play, senior Jo Dragotta provided the first goal of the day in regulation. Sophomore Tessa Andujar made a move to beat her marker and moved along the end line toward the box. Her cross in the box found Dragotta who hammered in the shot from 12 yards.

"Tessa ran down line and beat a player. She's really good at that," Dragotta said. "Havana Solaun made the front post run and dragged the player out. The ball from Tessa hit my foot and it went in."

The Rebels showed much more urgency in the second half. In the opening half, UM recorded two shots but in the second turned in five. The first goal of the season by UM's Erin Emerson off a corner kick tied the match in 80th minute.

UF Head Coach Becky Burleigh said the Gators got away from their strength in the second half.

"I think we just had to keep our composure. We started to turn it into a little bit of a dribble fest instead of a passing game, which is our strength. That's our fault, but you have to give Ole Miss credit for coming back and getting that goal," Burleigh said. "It was a great goal off their set piece."

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