Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Tuesday, April 16, 2024
<p>UF midfielder Liz Slattery takes a shot during Florida's 2-1 win against LSU on Oct. 11, 2015, at James G. Pressly Stadium.</p>

UF midfielder Liz Slattery takes a shot during Florida's 2-1 win against LSU on Oct. 11, 2015, at James G. Pressly Stadium.

With time expiring in No. 8 Florida's match against No. 17 South Carolina on Thursday, UF's Liz Slattery sent a flick over the right side of the penalty area that sailed over the goalkeeper’s outstretched arms.

In a double-overtime battle for the top spot of the Southeastern Conference, every second would count.

Despite a slow start, the Gators persevered with Slattery's last-second goal being the decider in Florida's 2-1 victory over the Gamecocks at James G. Pressly Stadium.

The Gamecocks started the game with a scoring chance early off a long throw-in that challenged the Gators by drawing freshman goalkeeper Kaylan Marckese off of her defensive line — the ball sailed wide.

On the Gamecocks' (11-4-1, 5-3-1 SEC) next opportunity — the Gators wouldn’t be as lucky.

UF allowed another long throw-in in the sixth minute, South Carolina again drew Marckese off of her line and the ball found the back of the net as the Gamecocks took an early lead.

The goal was scored by sophomore Savannah McCaskill who leads the Gamecocks with 10 goals this season.

The early goal was the eighth that the Gators (12-3-1, 6-2-1 SEC) have given up in the first half this season.

"We knew this wasn’t going to be easy," Burleigh said.

"We said if something bad happens we’re just going to reset and we’re going to be fine."

Unable to control possession early on, the Gators were searching for a goal-scoring opportunity of their own.

That’s exactly what they got when junior forward Savannah Jordan got the ball, breaking through the Gamecocks’ back line on a pass from senior defender Christen Westphal.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

Jordan kept the ball until the goalie made her move and pushed it to the left towards the far post — tying the game 1-1 in the 21st minute.

The goal was the fourth time this season that Westphal linked up with Jordan on a scoring play.

Westphal leads the SEC with nine assists.

In the 58th minute, Marckese made another youthful mistake as she made a poor throw back into play after picking the ball up.

The ball went straight to South Carolina forward Raina Johnson and she ripped it towards goal, but Marckese made a kick save to keep the game square at 1-1.

The Gators were able to break their streak of late-game giveaways as the game headed into overtime in an attempt to find a victor.

Florida had given up a goal in the 89th minute or later in three of the last five matches leading up to Thursday’s match.

Florida attacked first, getting pressure and forcing one corner kick early in the 10-minute period.

Both sides came out with an increased intensity during the overtime period and were still tied after the first half of OT.

And as the final ten seconds were being counted down in the stadium, the Gamecocks tried to play the ball out of bounds but the Gators pushed toward the box.

The ball found junior midfielder Liz Slattery, who made one defender miss and chipped the ball in the direction of the goal as time expired.

"I can’t even believe that just happened," Slattery said.

"It was weird. I felt really calm and I felt like everything slowed down. The goal itself was really slow and everything kind of slowed down as I touched it and it went right over her head."

 Follow Ryan Summers on Twitter @RyanSummers18

UF midfielder Liz Slattery takes a shot during Florida's 2-1 win against LSU on Oct. 11, 2015, at James G. Pressly Stadium.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.