Laughlin's Late Goal Propels Bears Past Evansville in Regular Season Finale
The Missouri State women's soccer team (10-5-2, 4-1-1) capped the regular season with a 1-0 shutout of Evansville (5-11-1, 2-4-0) at Plaster Field on Thursday night. The win gives the Bears a bye into the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament semifinals and the No. 2 seed.
Missouri State got a late goal from freshman Tiffany Laughlin to put the Bears ahead. Grace Cross picked up an Evansville turnover and found Laughlin. She drilled a high shot from 20 yards away. The shot trickled through the Purple Aces' keeper and into the net for the game-winner in the 85th minute. The goal was Laughlin's fourth of the year and second game-winning goal.
Sophomores Michelle Sommer and Nia Williams racked up five shots apiece. MSU outshot Evansville 23 to two for the match.
Junior goalkeeper Jessica Teahan was virtually untested, making the save on the only shot she faced. It was her fifth shutout of the season and third against an MVC foe.
"We had control most of the match," said head coach Rob Brewer. "But they are a dangerous team. Our defense kept them in check and did a good job of taking away their chances."
The win is Missouri State's 10th of the season, the third time in five seasons to reach that total. The second-place finish in conference ties last season's mark for the best conference finish in school history.
The Bears will now await an opponent for next Friday's semifinal match in Omaha, Neb.