AUBURN, Ala. (EETV) – Auburn Soccer is in control of its own destiny heading into Thursday’s matchup against the Georgia Bulldogs in Athens, Georgia.
A win against the Bulldogs would cement Auburn’s place in the SEC Tournament starting Sunday, Oct. 29 in Pensacola, Florida. The top 10 teams in the SEC standings will make the tournament while the bottom four will be left out.
The Tigers currently sit in a tie for eighth in the conference standings with 11 conference points. Positions eight through 13 are separated by just three conference points, the same amount a team earns with a win.
Auburn has defeated Georgia the last six times the teams have faced off going back to 2016, but none of those teams were SEC East Champs.
Georgia is led by redshirt freshman Summer Denigan who has had a breakout season after suffering a season-ending injury three games into her 2022 campaign. Denigan has come into her own in the latter half of the season scoring five goals with two coming in the past three matches.
Denigan is joined by fellow midfielder Nicole Vernis who has recorded four goals this season with an additional five assists to give her a team-leading 13 points on the season. Vernis has shown up in clutch moments for the Bulldogs scoring three game-winning goals and assisting on another.
In the case of a tie, Auburn still has a chance to make the tournament, though they would need some help. No. 13 South Carolina needs to take care of Florida. The Gators are on the outside looking in and hold the head-to-head tiebreaker with Auburn. Texas A&M also needs to defeat LSU in Baton Rouge.
Auburn looks to make some noise in the SEC Tournament no matter what seed. The Tigers knocked off its first top-10 opponent since 2017 with a 2-1 defeat of the 1-seed, No. 6 Arkansas on Oct. 8.