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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Aggies claim SEC regular season title with 2-0 victory over Auburn

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Photo by Abbey Santoro

Freshman midfielder Barbra Olivieri takes a corner kick for the Aggies. 

No. 8 Texas A&M won its third SEC regular season championship Monday afternoon after defeating the 15th ranked Auburn Tigers 2-0.
With this title the Aggies pushed their total SEC Championships to six since joining the conference in 2012. Texas A&M leads the SEC in conference titles since 2013, when they won their first SEC conference title. It is also the 18th conference title in the program’s prolific 28-year history.
The first 15 minutes of the first half saw neither team successfully possess the ball for lengthy periods of time, however, both sides were able to create decent chances.
The Aggies had the clearest chance to open the scoring in the 25th minute when freshman midfielder Kate Colvin played a great pass into the feet of Barbara Olivieri who was taken down in the box. Senior Jimena Lopez stepped up to take the penalty, but fired well wide, her second miss from six yards this season.
The maroon and white’s inability to score in the first half despite eight shots and six corner kicks was a testament to the organization, compactness and discipline of the Tigers’ midfield and backline.
The latter half of play started with a frenetic pace with both teams looking to score and set the tone for the rest of the game. Around the 60th minute of play Barbara Olivieri found Kate Colvin in the attacking third, but Colvin was denied by Auburn goalkeeper Maddie Prohaska who produced a brilliant double stop to keep the score level.
The Aggies finally broke the Tigers’ defense down 10 minutes later when Lopez’s pinpoint ball over the top of the backline found Olivieri who deftly applied the finishing touch. The goal is Olivieri’s fifth of the campaign thus far as she continues her red-hot form.
After conceding, the Tigers seemed to lose all momentum they had built over the course of the game, which could very well have been a symptom of playing their fourth game in 11 days. A&M would capitalize on the Tigers’ fatigue with eight minutes to play after senior Addie McCain headed in her fifth goal of the season after Lopez’s effort rebounded off of the crossbar.
Special mentions need to be made for the A&M defense who held the Tigers to just six shots over the 90 minutes. It’s the maroon and white’s fourth clean sheet of the season overall, and goalkeeper Kenna Caldwell’s second.
Along with clinching the SEC regular-season title, the Aggies also won their sixth straight match Monday afternoon, elevating them to a 7-1-0 record for the regular-season. Meanwhile, the Auburn Tigers finished the regular-season with a 3-3-2 record.
Lopez said to win the conference regular season title will put the Aggies in good stead heading into the postseason.
“We are really happy that we got this title. It gives us confidence, and it gets us hungry to do it all over again,” Lopez said. “Through the tournament, we have the chance to be absolute champions, not co-champions, so we are definitely looking for that.”
The Aggies will return to action on Nov. 17 at the SEC Tournament in Orange Beach, Ala. Their No. 3 seed means that the Aggies will receive a double bye to start the tournament. They will play No. 6 seed Ole Miss, No. 11 seed Alabama or No. 14 seed LSU. Kickoff for the Nov. 17 game is set for 3 p.m.

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