MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin soccer team scrapped out a 1-0 victory over Jacksonville State to begin Ohio Valley Conference play this evening.
UT Martin (3-5-2, 1-0 OVC) played gritty soccer tonight as there were a total of 37 fouls in the match. The defensive battle led to just 12 Jacksonville State and four UT Martin shots.
The Skyhawk offense was led by freshman Alice Adams, who netted her second career goal tonight. Adams found the back of the net in the 10th minute and gave UT Martin a lead it would hang on to for the rest of the match.
Freshman goalkeeper Erica Myers stood tall tonight as the Holland, Ohio native tallied five saves in the first shutout of the season for the Skyhawks.
Sara Ketis also played a key role in tonight’s match, as she was responsible for a sliding block on a potential game-tying Gamecock goal with a wide open net behind her with 14 seconds remaining that ensured a UT Martin victory.
“I am delighted for the first conference win of the season,” said UT Martin head coach Phil McNamara. “If you are going to do well in the league and going to make the tournament, you have to win your home games. That’s what we did tonight against a very hard working Jacksonville State team. I thought both teams looked a little nervous tonight with the first conference game at hand. I thought the girls had spurts of really good play tonight and hopefully this win will give us a foundation to go forward. I’m glad we’re off to a clean sheet and a good, strong win out of the gates.”
The Skyhawks’ game-winning goal came at the 9:36 mark as Adams took the ball from a scrum of players and sent a high arcing shot over Gamecock goalkeeper Caroline Robinson’s head. It would prove to be UT Martin’s lone shot on goal for the entire match.
After Adams’ goal, the Skyhawk defense clamped down. Jacksonville State’s best look of the evening came in the 90th minute with time running out, but Ketis was there for the clutch save.
UT Martin puts its perfect OVC record on the line when it hosts Southeast Missouri on Sunday, Sept. 17. Kickoff is slated for 2 p.m.