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Missouri soccer will make the trip to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, to face the Crimson Tide in the host’s first SEC home match. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. Thursday at Alabama Soccer Stadium.

Both sides come into the match at .500. The Tigers (4-4, 0-1 SEC) are coming off consecutive defeats to BYU and South Carolina, both of which are receiving votes for the Top 25. Alabama (5-5, 0-1) comes in with wins in two of its last three matches, the loss being a 3-1 defeat to Ole Miss. Both teams are in search of their first conference win of the season.

Missouri is led by freshman Milena Fischer. The German midfielder leads the team in goals (four) and assists (five). Sophomore goalkeeper Sophia Worth earned the starting spot and has been the first name on the team sheet since a 1-0 win against Miami on Sept. 2, Missouri’s fourth match of the regular season.

For the Crimson Tide, graduate student Ashlynn Serepca has a team-high five goals and is tied for the team lead with two assists. Fellow graduate student McKinley Crone is likely to start in goal for Alabama. She has appeared in all 10 Alabama matches, starting eight. It wouldn’t be a shock to see Brooke Bollinger make an appearance in goal; she has played in five matches but only started two.

Both teams have had inconsistent results over the course of the early season. The Crimson Tide come in with a +2 goal difference, but have lost three matches by two or more goals. Missouri comes in with a -8 goal difference and has lost three matches by three or more.

The only defeat the Tigers have registered this season by fewer than three goals was the SEC-opening 2-1 loss to South Carolina.

The Crimson Tide took No. 8 TCU to extra time before falling 2-1 but have also lost to Samford. Alabama’s other losses were to No. 1 Florida State and Memphis, which is receiving the most votes to be ranked outside the Top 25.

Alabama was picked to finish eighth and Missouri 12th in the SEC Preseason Coaches Poll.

This article originally ran on columbiamissourian.com.

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