Since the height of North Carolina's dynasty over DI women's soccer, going an entire season undefeated is extremely challenging. It hasn't happened since Stanford in 2011, and only three teams have pulled off the feat since 2000.
Two more undefeated teams fell by the wayside on Thursday night, here's a quick recap of each:
FULL SCOREBOARD: Take a look at all the scores around DI women's soccer
The 2022 season is quickly turning into a landmark campaign for Alabama women’s soccer after its 2-0 win over No. 5 South Carolina on Thursday.
The first half came and went without a breakthrough, but the Crimson Tide held the Gamecocks without a single attempt at goal in the opening 45 minutes. Alabama really got into a groove after the break, outshooting South Carolina 16-6, taking the lead in the 53rd minute through Felicia Knox.
With a team-high seven assists, Knox may be more accustomed to setting up goals, but this time she was on the end of a Riley Tanner cutback to put the Tide ahead.
Just a minute later, Alabama doubled its advantage when Riley Mattingly Parker, the team’s leading scorer, rose above the defense on a set piece, sending a towering header over the goalkeeper’s outstretched arms.
The assist? From Knox, of course.
South Carolina provided very little threat to get back in the game, failing to score for the second straight match. The Crimson Tide are now 7-1-1 and have put together a run of seven games unbeaten, outsourcing opponents 18-4 in that stretch.
Here are five numbers to know from the Crimson Tide’s huge SEC win:
- 7: Mattingly Parker’s seven goals are four better than any other Alabama player and already two better than her previous career-high (yes, in just nine games).
- 2: This is the team’s second win this season over a top-10 opponent — a first in program history. The first came after a three-goal flurry in six minutes against then-No. 6 BYU in Provo, Utah on Sept. 1.
- 3: Along with a victory over then-No. 18 Clemson on Aug. 28, this is the first time since 2011 that the Tide has three top-25 wins in the same season.
- 11: The Tide have now won 11 straight home games, besting its previous record of 10 straight from 1997-98.
- 1,177: There were 1,177 fans on hand at the Alabama Soccer Stadium to cheer on their Tide, a figure that slots into ninth place on the program’s all-time attendance record. It’s also the largest turnout in over seven years.
Look away now, South Carolina fans, because Clemson celebrated a top-10 upset of its own on Thursday night. The No. 24 Tigers blanked No. 6 Notre Dame 2-0 at home, handing the Irish their first loss of the season.
Goals came courtesy of Samantha Meredith and Emily Brough, but the star of the show was Clemson goalkeeper Halle Mackiewicz. She saved three shots in each half, but the box score doesn’t do her justice. She was equal to everything the Irish sent her way, resulting in impressive dives like this one low to her right late in the first half.
HALLE!!! WHAT A SAVE FOR THE JUNIOR 👊 pic.twitter.com/XOwnxkdSl0— Clemson Women's Soccer (@clemsonwsoccer) September 16, 2022
Interestingly, this isn’t the first time the Tigers have beaten a previously undefeated Notre Dame. They pulled off a similar feat in 2015, taking down a top-5 Irish team at Historic Riggs Field. This is Clemson’s highest-ranked home win in nearly four years, a double-overtime win over No. 4 Virginia in September 2018.