The Florida Gators soccer team opens Southeastern Conference play tonight on the road against the Vanderbilt Commodores at 8 p.m.
Gators Look to Break Losing Skid
It has not been a dream start right out the gate for 1st year head coach Tony Amato. His team starts conference play sporting a 1-5-1 record and are coming off a crushing 7-1 defeat against No. 2 ranked North Carolina last week.
The Gators look to get back on track against a Vanderbilt team that has also had their fair share of struggles with a 3-4-1 record.
The Commodores won the SEC Tournament last season, but their fortunes quickly reversed when they lost to Penn State in the second round of the NCAA Tournament following a first round bye. Those fortunes would follow them into their 2021 campaign. At home in Nashville, Vanderbilt fell twice to ranked opponents: a 2-0 defeat against No. 5 Duke and a 4-1 loss to No. 23 Pepperdine.
Leading Vanderbilt into tonight’s contest is senior midfielder Raegan Kelly, who currently leads the team with four goals and nine points. The team backbone is sophomore goalkeeper Kate Devine, who has started in net every game thus far this season. She carries a goals-against-average of 1.51.
The last time Florida and Vanderbilt met was on October 18, 2020 when the Commodores secured a 2-1 victory at Gainesville in double overtime.
Florida led 1-0 at halftime thanks to a sliding foot goal by Maddy Rhodes in the 41st minute. In the 80th minute, Vanderbilt tied the game with a Raegan Kelly goal. Vandy’s Myra Konte would have the final say in this battle, scoring the game-winning goal in the 103rd minute.
The Gators dominate the all-time series with a 28-4-1 record.
Conclusion of Non-Conference Play
Florida concludes its regular season non-conference play on Sunday against North Florida
North Florida, making its first ever appearance at Donald R. Dizney Stadium, is riding a four game win streak heading into Sunday.
As one chapter of the season closes and another one begins, Coach Amato and his Gators squad look to turn ship in the right direction.