CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (gomocs.com) --- The 2015-16 season for the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga begins this Sunday with the women's soccer match against Austin Peay. The game will kick off at Finley Stadium at 2 p.m.
The sideline has a new look with the arrival of head coach Gavin McKinney last spring. He is joined by assistant coach Martyn Blankley and former keeper Taylor (Mangrum) Campbell.
On the field, the Mocs return 17 players including senior midfielder Clare Latham (Memphis, Tenn.). She ranks fourth for assists among active players in the Southern Conference and had a team-high seven last year for Chattanooga. Senior keeper Lauren Thomas (Memphis, Tenn.) returns to the lineup in the net, but will have competition at that position from junior transfer Katie Emig (Knoxville, Tenn.) and freshman Molli Miller (Maryville, Tenn.).
Chattanooga's offense has shown up in both of its preseason matches with sophomore transfer Peyton McCollum (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) finding the net first for the Mocs in their preseason exhibition against Belmont. Emig made three saves as the starter in the match without giving up a goal and Miller snared two saves in her 30 minutes in goal.
The Mocs hosted UAH two days later at Finley Stadium and scored four times in the match. JuniorSamantha Hogan (Gallatin, Tenn.) assisted on all four scores with sophomore McKenzie Gregg(Newport, Tenn.) finding the net twice. Senior Skylar Brewer (Farragut, Tenn.) and sophomore Amanda Ortiz (Arlington, Tenn.) each recorded a goal in the exciting offensive display. Thomas grabbed two of the Mocs' four saves and didn't give up a goal.
Austin Peay leads the series with the Mocs 6-3 including a 5-2 win over UTC last year in Clarksville, Tenn. Crystal Mackezyk scored both of Chattanooga's goals with her second giving the Mocs a 2-1 lead in the 23rd minute. The Lady Govs, however, took the lead before halftime and added a pair of goals in the second half against fill-in keeper Natalie Irwin, a field player.
Beginning at 11 a.m. at the Chattanooga Market, UTC student-athletes will be in the First Tennessee Pavilion signing autographs. The match is set to kick off at Finley Stadium at 2 p.m. and admission is FREE. For those who can't attend, follow the action at GoMocs.com with live video streaming and Live Stats.