Florida soccer shuts out Sooners
Published: Friday, September 6, 2013 at 11:10 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, September 6, 2013 at 11:10 p.m.
A goal in the game's ninth minute by freshman midfielder Pamela Begic staked No. 10 Florida to an early 1-0 lead and the Gators went on to defeat Oklahoma, 3-0, on a wet Pressly Stadium pitch Friday night in a match that was delayed an hour by area lightning.
“That's a big deal for us,” coach Becky Burleigh said. “I don't think we played our best tonight, but to come out of here with three goals and a shutout was definitely a step in the right direction.”
Junior defender Lauren Silver's run into the box started UF's first score, with Begic, a Slovenian native who has started the last four matches for the Gators (4-1) and scored her first career goal in Sunday's 4-0 road win over FIU, heading Silver's cross into the back of the net for her second goal of the season.
Silver got the assist, her third of the year, all coming in the last two matches.
That was all the scoring in the first half, but sophomore midfielder Lauren Smith made it 2-0 in the 60th minute when she corralled a ball at the top of the box and delivered a low shot past OU goalie Kassidie Stade from 18 yards out for her first career goal.
“I think the team is doing awesome this year, and it just feels really good to be participating and be part of the success,” Smith said. “I feel like we're really starting to get into a rhythm.”
Freshman forward Brooke Sharp followed up with her first career goal in the 71st minute, blasting a left-footed shot into the upper left corner of the net from eight yards out to cap the scoring.
Junior goalkeeper Taylor Burke continued her solid play for the Gators, recording her second straight shutout and 17th of her career. Burke, who took over at the half of the FSU-Florida game last Friday, has not allowed a goal in the last 2 1/2 games.
The Gators, who outshot the Sooners by an 8-3 margin, will go for their third straight win and a Big 12 sweep when they host Oklahoma State on Sunday at 1 p.m.
The Cowboys (3-0-2) battled No. 2 FSU to a 1-1 tie in overtime Friday night in Tallahassee.