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AUBURN, Ala. – After mounting a furious comeback in the second half, the Alabama soccer team fell 4-3 at Auburn Thursday night when the Tigers scored the winning goal with 32 seconds remaining in the second overtime period at the Auburn Soccer Complex in the Tide’s season finale.
The loss ends Alabama’s season at 8-9-2 overall and 3-8-2 in Southeastern Conference play. Auburn improves to 11-9 overall and 7-6-0 in the SEC. Alabama entered the match needing to win to have a chance at advancing to next week’s SEC Tournament.
After Auburn jumped out in front early on with three goals in the first half, Alabama bounced back in the second half with three goals of its own. Sophomore Theresa Diederich started the comeback, taking a Kendall Khanna pass in the box and finishing it off to cut the score to 3-1 in the 54th minute. The goal was Diederich’s seventh of the year. Freshman Merel Van Dongen kept UA in the game, converting a penalty kick in the 69th minute. Sophomore defender Laura Lee Smith, pushed up to finish the game, tied things up when she put a shot off the crossbar into the net in the 79th minute.
The score stayed tied through the first overtime period, even though UA forced Auburn goalkeeper Amy Howard to make three saves in the period and had a shot hit the crossbar. Auburn caught Alabama pressing forward in the second overtime when Tatiana Coleman chipped in a shot for her second goal of the night with less than a minute to go.
Alabama outshot Auburn 27-20, including an 11-9 edge in shots on goal. Junior goalkeeper Shelby Church made five stops, while Howard made eight saves for Auburn.
Christopher Walsh covers Alabama football for BamaOnline, 247Sports, and is the author of 18 books.
247Sports In partnership with CBS Sports