Tenneee women occer eaon end on lat-minute goal by Nebraka in NCAA econd round

Tennessee womens soccer was one minute away from a chance to extend its Cinderella postseason run in the NCAA Tournament.

But Nebraska got on the end of a loose ball in the box and scored at the back post. The winning goal came at the end of a chaotic last push by the Huskers, and the Lady Vols desperately tried to clear the ball.

After tying the game right after halftime, unseeded Tennessee couldnt pull off another magical upset, losing 2-1 to No. 5 seed Nebraska (16-3-3) on Friday in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Tennessee (9-7-4) was one of only two unseeded teams to advance past the first round. UC Irvine, which Nebraska will face in the Sweet 16, took down reigning national and Pac-12 champion

UCLA, which so far is the only No. 1 seed to be eliminated.Sophomore forward Macaira Midgley scored Tennessees lone goal. The Volunteers had eight shots (two on goal) and five corner kicks. Nebraska had 12 shots (five on goal) and eight corners.

Tennessees defense contained the No. 6 scoring offense in the nation, as well as the nations leading goal scorer Eleanor Dale, who had 26 goals this season. Nebraska, which averages 2.86 goals per game, managed just three shots until the final minute of the first half. But with just seconds left before halftime, Tennessee goalkeeper Ally Zazzaras plant foot hit a poor patch of the field as she took a goal kick.

Zazzara slipped and ended up on the ground. Nebraska forward Sarah Weber buried the slow-rolling ball in the box to score her 15th goal of the season and give the Huskers a 1-0 lead.

Tennessee sophomore midfielder Macaira Midgley looks to pass to sophomore forward Kameron Simmonds in the NCAA second round against Nebraska on Nov. 17, 2023. Midgley scored Tennessees first goal to tie the game early in the second half.

MoreThe fluke slip was a frustrating way to end the half after Tennessees incredible defensive execution all game. It was also a tough break for Zazzara, who tied the program record of 15 saves in the first round to lead Tennessee to an upset over No. 4 seed Xavier.

TEAM IMPACT: Dance parties and hospital visits: How Tennessee soccer makes 8-year-old part of teamTennessee bounced back almost immediately in the second half. Defender Kennedy Price crossed a ball into the box and Nebraska got on the end of it. But the deflection rolled right to Midgley, who buried the ball on a beautiful one-touch shot to tie it 1-1. Tennessee seemed to have the upper hand for most of the second half until the last minute.

The NCAA Tournament run was an incredible feat for the Lady Vols, who had suffered eight season-ending injuries. Three players got injured before the season, three in the first month and two suffered injuries toward the end of the season.

Blue and orange Remember Ace Clement? Daughter Kristen Blue of Bearden set to join Lady Vols soccerThe injured players include veteran starters like Tara Katz, Claudia Dipasupil and leading scorer Jaida Thomas. Freshman Kate Runyon, who had been out with an injury since Oct. 13, returned to play in the first half against the Huskers.

Cora Hall covers University of Tennessee women’s athletics. Email her at cora.hallknoxnews.com and follow her on

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This article originally appeared on Knoxville News Sentinel: Tennessee womens soccer loses to Nebraska in NCAA second round