By Dylan Vazzano, TTU Sports Information
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – Déjà vu struck the pitch for the Tennessee Tech soccer team, as the Golden Eagles once again showcased late-match dramatics on the way to a 1-1 draw Thursday night at UTC Sports Complex.
Fresh off a 1-1 knot with WKU on Sunday that saw Tech (1-2-2) erase a 1-0 deficit with a Katie Toney goal in the 81st minute, the Golden Eagles used a similar script en route to running the club's unbeaten streak to three consecutive. Down 1-0 with under five minutes to play, Meredith Nye found a way to provide the purple and gold with the equalizer for her first goal of the season and fifth of her career.
Chloe Smith set the stage for Nye's heroics with a well-timed corner that saw Smith loft one into the box, connecting with an ascending Nye, who climbed the ladder and headed in the deadlocking score in the 86th minute. Smith picked up her second assist of the season on the crucial goal.
After a scoreless first 45 minutes of action, the Mocs (1-2-2) wasted no time in getting on the board early in the second, using a Carolina Richvalsky goal just over two minutes into the period to break the 0-0 knot. The 5-foot-7 freshman connected on her first-career score thanks to a drive in the upper right corner of the net.
Sophomore goalkeeper Maggie Conrad set a career-high with seven saves, which included five stops in the first half. The Cedar Rapids, Iowa native helped tie a ribbon on a clean first period with a stop on a Mackenzie Smith shot among heavy traffic in the box with less than 15 seconds left in the stanza.
The Golden Eagles nearly put one through with less than 10 minutes remaining until intermission, but Taylor Rhodes' drive clipped the left post to keep the match preserved at nil-nil. The 5-foot-6 sophomore would go on to put one on-point in the 42nd minute, but UTC's Caroline Ekern gobbled it up. Rhodes tied Yao Giada Zhou for the most first-half shots by a Golden Eagle with two apiece. Allison Lee was responsible for TTU's other shot on-goal in the opening frame with an attempt in the 7th minute.
Giada Zhou would go on to tie Mackenzie Smith and Birna Johannsdottir for the most shots in the match with three tries each. Ekern ended with contest with two saves.
The Golden Eagles will continue a season-long three-match road swing with a Sunday affair at the University of Tennessee. Kickoff in Knoxville is slated for 6 p.m. CT.
Photo by Jim Dillon