After putting together two convincing wins over Mississippi State and Tennessee last weekend, VolleyZou was swept on the road in Oxford by Ole Miss, 3-0. The loss ended a streak of 20-straight SEC victories for Coach Kreklow and the Tigers, with their last loss coming at the hands of Alabama in November of 2012.
The Tigers once again struggled offensively throughout the match, committing 22 attack errors for a final .156 attack clip in Wednesday's loss. Take away a few attack errors here and there, and spread the offense out to more than Carly Kan and Emily Wilson, Missouri could have stolen a set or two from the Rebels. Of course, you could make the same excuse for almost all of MU's other losses this year.
https://twitter.com/MizzouVB/status/517473771327094784">October 2, 2014
Going forward, if Mizzou wants to maintain a spot in the top six of the SEC, they need to the offense clean up their play if they want to have a chance against Florida and Kentucky. They've only hit above .250 in a handful of games, and there has also been a few games where the Tigers have hit sub-.200 due to numerous attack errors.
The next four matches present a great opportunity for the Tigers to put up a few wins, with Georgia, UMKC, Mississippi (who MU hit .400-plus against), and LSU up next on the schedule. This weekend they travel to Athens to take on Georgia, a team that they share a couple of similarities with this year. On the stat sheet, both teams are putting up numbers very similar to one another, with their hitting percentage and opponent hitting percentage very close to one another this year. UGA has dropped a handful of games that they should have won, like the Tigers.
I do think Missouri has the better attack compared to UGA, but again, it comes down to how clean the offense plays. Averaging about 19 errors a match isn't exactly how you want to be going into conference play, but if the stars of this team, Carly Kan, Emily Wilson, and Whitney Little, can guide the offense more efficiently the rest of the year, it wouldn't be out of the question for MU to be a top five team in the conference. Mizzou should get past Georgia, but then again, they should have beaten Northwestern State, Oakland, and Saint Louis. Mizzou 3, Georgia 2
The Missouri football team wasn't the only team that pulled off a big upset win in Columbia, SC last week, with Coach Bryan Blitz and the Missouri soccer team knocking off No. 14 South Carolina to extend their unbeaten streak to eight matches. Sophomore Lauren Selaiden nailed the game-winning goal in the 30th minute, and the Tigers defense spearheaded by Kepper McKenzie Sauerwein held firm for the 1-0 victory.
The Tigers couldn't complete the weekend sweep, as they fell to No. 6 Florida in Gainesville, 3-1. The Gators jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead with two goals in the opening 45 minutes. Mizzou was able to pull within one with Alli Magaletta laced a 35-yard shot into the back of the net to make it 2-1 Florida. UF's Savannah Jordan responded with a 5-yard tap in late to seal the win for the Gators.
Mizzou currently sits tied for 4th in the SEC, and while it's still early in the season, last week's win against the Gamecocks was huge for the long run. That's three points the Tigers could use to get a higher seed in the SEC Tournament, and it doesn't look bad on a potential NCAA tournament resume as well.
Another big weekend is on the docket for MU Soccer, with Kentucky and Vanderbilt stopping by Walton Stadium Friday and Sunday. The Wildcats bring in one of the best offenses in the conference with 24 goals scored through the first ten matches, scoring five in the last two matches alone. While the Tigers offense hasn't put up as stellar of numbers, the play of McKenzie Sauerwein at Keeper has been a big proponent of the Tigers success this year, with 34 saves and 4 shutouts this season. Kentucky is definitely on the rise this year, and it'll be difficult for MU to keep up if they fall behind. Kentucky 2, Mizzou 1
Next up, Vanderbilt. The Commodores drew a tough slate to start the season, but have done well to keep their head above water. Their tough conference schedule continues when they arrive in Columbia this weekend, and if what we've seen from this team is what they'll bring out on Sunday, the Tigers should be able to outshoot and top the 'Dores this weekend in CoMo. Mizzou 2, Vanderbilt 0