ORANGE BEACH, Ala. – No. 19 Arkansas defeated Vanderbilt 1-0 Wednesday at the Orange Beach Sportsplex to advance to the semifinal round of the 2016 Southeastern Conference Tournament in Orange Beach, Alabama.
Senior Claire Kelley headed in a cross from senior Alexandra Fischer that found the back of the right side of the net during the 78th minute of play. It was Kelley’s eighth score of the season and places her in a three-way tie for the team lead in goals along with senior Lindsey Mayo and freshman Kayla McKeon.
The last time the Razorbacks won an SEC Tournament match was in 2013, defeating Missouri 4-0. This victory marks the furthest Arkansas has been in postseason conference play during head coach Colby Hale’s tenure. The Razorbacks improve to 16-4-0 overall and 9-3-0 in league play, a mark previously unsurpassed in program history. Arkansas’ 16 season wins broke the previous record of 15 set 2013.
Vanderbilt finishes its season at 9-9-1 overall and 5-6-1 within the SEC.
“It’s postseason, so at the end of the day, it’s win and advance,” Hale said. “We always try to find two sides to every game. The positive is we won. This team are winners. They find ways to win. The flip side is we didn’t excel in some areas we pride ourselves in. What a fantastic ball by Sparky [Fischer] and an absolute class finish by Claire [Kelley]. Cailee [Dennis] was also tremendous and found the weak side which we talked about being on. Overall, we will enjoy this win and start preparing for a good Auburn team tomorrow.”
Kelley was recently honored with a first team All-SEC award on Sunday along with four other Razorbacks who nabbed second-team accolades and All-Freshman team selections.
Senior goalkeeper Cameron Carter also tallied one save in 90 minutes of play.
Arkansas held an 11-5 advantage in shots but both teams each had three corner kicks in the match.
The Razorbacks will next face No. 11 Auburn on Friday, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m. in a rematch of their Oct. 14 contest that went the Tigers’ way 3-2 at their home field. Auburn defeated Tennessee 3-1 during the first quarterfinal match on Wednesday.
The match will be broadcast live on SEC Network.