Missouri goalie McKenzie Sauerwein kicks the ball into play during the Tigers’ 1-0 win over Tennessee-Martin on Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, at Walton Stadium in Columbia, Missouri. (Greg Dailey)
By Greg Dailey, KBIA Sports
Emotions ran high as Jessica Herrman threw her arms in the air.
After two ACL surgeries and fighting through a hamstring injury, Hermann scored the go-ahead goal in the 75th minute, giving Missouri a 2-1 victory over Kentucky Friday at Walton Stadium.
“It brought a tear to all of our eyes,” coach Bryan Blitz said.
A hard-fought game between the Tigers and Wildcats translated to 19 total fouls and 31 shots. The teams played in bitter conditions as the temperature dipped into the 40s during the rainy day.
A Missouri native struck first, however it was for the visitors from Kentucky. In the 12th minute, Wildcat sophomore Jade Klump from Pacific, Missouri put in a rebound after a McKenzie Sauerwein save.
The Wildcats weren’t finished attacking offensively and continued to pressure Sauerwein. In the 25th minute, Arin Gilliland had a one-on-one with the Missouri goalie, but Sauerwein cut down the angle and pushed it wide. Kentucky couldn’t capitalize, and the Tigers later made the visitors pay.
In the 39th minute, freshman forward Allie Hess scored the first goal of her collegiate career. Sophomore Erin Webb had a look in the box but whiffed and the ball rolled right to Hess for the finish.
“It felt great, and hopefully there is more to come,” Hess said.
There was more to come after halftime, courtesy of Herrman. In the 75th minute, the redshirt sophomore had a lane up the left side, running with midfielder Melanie Donaldson. Herrman hit it with her left leg, fittingly the one on which she had surgery.
“I was like ‘Don’t mess up,’” Herrman said when talking about watching her shot go into the net. “I turned around and everyone was running at me.”
Herrman, a year and five months removed from her second ACL surgery, played nine minutes.
The Tigers improved to 8-2-2 (3-1-0), while Kentucky dropped to 7-4-0 (2-2-0).
Missouri continues Southeastern Conference play Sunday at Walton Stadium when it takes on Vanderbilt at 1 p.m.