Lady Buffaloes soccer tops Dalton State 3-2 for home opener

Published 11:03 pm Tuesday, September 6, 2016


The Lady Buffaloes played their first home game of the season Tuesday, and they gave the Milligan fans quite a show.

Down 2-0 early in the second half, the Lady Buffs mustered up a comeback and topped Dalton State (Ga.) 3-2 at Anglin Field to move to 2-1 on the season.

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“It is big for belief,” Milligan head coach Lisa Buckley said about the Lady Buffaloes comeback win. “We had a tough season last season, and it is tough to lose that mentality. But this team just feels like a completely different team. They always believe they can win regardless of the score.”

Coming out of the half, the score remained locked at 0 before Dalton State’s Adriana Romera found the back of the goal at the 51:51 mark to give the Roadrunners a 1-0 lead.

Roughly ten minutes later, the Roadrunner struck again with Romera firing in another shot to give her team a 2-0 lead at 61:40.

Down two goals, the Lady Buffaloes were scrambling to find an answer, and that answer would start with Milligan sophomore Amy Long . Long would finally get her team on board by blasting in a penalty kick to cut Dalton State’s lead to 2-1 at 69:23 mark.

“You know the importance of it,” Long said about stepping up to the line for a penalty kick during a close match. “You know you have to put it away. You just have to think, that it is just you and the goal keeper and forget about everything else.”

At the 72:42 mark, off an assist by Milligan’s Bekah Cundiff, Long shot in a close range goal to tie things up at 2-2. Not too long after, the go-ahead goal would come off the foot of Milligan freshman Alyson McMillan, who found the back of the net off an assist from Amy Olvera to give the Lady Buffaloes a 3-2 lead at the 76:27 mark.

“The whole play just came together well,” McMillan said. “I just knew that I had to get it in and I got it in.”

The first half would see the teams fight for possession for most of the half with the Lady Buffaloes playing the aggressor with Milligan taking five shots to Dalton’s 3. In the second half, the Lady Buffaloes took six shots to the Roadrunners four.

Milligan goal keeper Charlotte Stephens had six saves on the night, while Dalton State’s keeper, Asmara Holmes, had six also.

The Lady Buffaloes are off to a good start for the 2016 season compared to last year, when Milligan had a 1-2 record after their first three games. With freshmen stepping up and the team working well together, Coach Buckley said she is expecting things to keep progressing.

“We are developing the way that I thought we would and hoped we would” Buckley said. “We still have to get a little bit better mentally. I think we are developing well.

“We are meshing well as a team. We have some freshmen coming in and making a huge impact on the field. I think that is every coaches dream.”

The Lady Buffaloes will open up the conference season this Saturday at Anglin Field against Columbia College (3-2, AAC 0-0) at 3 p.m.

“Columbia is always a physical battle,” Buckley said. “They are always a good team that is going to come out guns blazing. They have some players with real pace and will do you some damage if you don’t play well.

“So we are going to have to play well to get a result against them, for sure.”

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