#22 Lady Vols Fall on Wrong Side of Comeback Against #5 Duke

Photo Credit: University of Tennessee Athletics
By Tucker Harlin

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — No. 22 Tennessee (0-2-1) fell to No. 5 Duke (3-0-0) as the Blue Devils surged through the final 20 minutes of play in a comeback win over the Lady Vols at Regal Soccer Stadium on Thursday night..

The first half of the top-25 matchup was a slugfest as both teams had five shots apiece and the only two corner kicks belonged to the Blue Devils. There was a moment of controversy late in the half as a Kameron Simmonds shot crossed the line by a few inches but was not counted.

The lone bright spot for either team in the first half came from Lady Vols forward Jaida Thomas’ goal in the 26th minute of the match, her second of the season. The goal gave the Lady Vols the lead heading into halftime.

With momentum on their side, the Lady Vols would extend their lead at the start of the second half with a Taylor Huff header in the 51st minute, giving them a 2-0 lead.

However, the match was far from over.

Duke would go on to unleash its fury on Tennessee, scoring a whopping three goals in just 11 minutes in the final stretch of the game. A pair of tap-ins by midfielder Sophie Jones and forward Kat Rader paired with a long-range score from forward Michelle Cooper would seal a 3-2 comeback victory for Duke.

After running a gauntlet for its first three matches, Tennessee will finally get a crack at an unranked and winless opponent as the Lady Vols will look to right the ship next Wednesday against Bowling Green at Regal Soccer Stadium.