OXFORD, Miss. - On a night where the Rebel offense was in high-pressure mode, Mandy McCalla found the back of the net for the lone goal of the night as Ole Miss (11-3-1, 4-2-0 SEC) defeated Vanderbilt (3-8-3, 0-5-1 SEC) by a score of 1-0.
The Rebels possessed the ball for much of the contest and pressured the Vanderbilt defense throughout the night, out-shooting the Commodores 30-to-5 and turning in 18 corners. Ole Miss couldn't convert on the shots, hitting the crossbar and post several times in conjunction with a frenetic Vanderbilt defense, until McCalla delivered the game-winner in the 58th minute.
Jennifer Miller took a shot from nine yards out in the box, only to have it blocked by a Commodore. The ball took a fortuitous bounce to the feet of McCalla, who delivered a hard strike back at the goal and finding the net to put Ole Miss on the board.
It was the only lapse of defense on the night for Vanderbilt keeper Shannon Morrish, who posted 10 saves in the outing.
"The back line played great tonight with a great effort on three dangerous players on Vanderbilt's front line," said Ole Miss head coach Matt Mott. "To limit their chances was awesome. I'm really happy with our team's defensive efforts as a whole. They all did a great job in limiting chances and contributing to the shutout.
"We really created a lot of chances tonight," Mott said. "Some days they will go in and some days they won't. You just hope that your team has the character to keep fighting and find a goal. We did that tonight to get on the board and then our defense kept us on top for the three points in the standings."
Ole Miss' defense shined on the night, limiting the Commodores to only five shots with one on goal. It marked the second time this season that Vanderbilt was shutout in Southeastern Conference play with the other coming at the hands of Texas A&M.
The Rebels came out of the gate firing on all cylinders, putting up 16 shots in the first half while limiting Vanderbilt to only three shots - two in one possession. The defense continued that effort in the second half, holding the Commodores to only two shots while the offense continued to press the Vanderbilt back line with 14 shots.
Ole Miss will now take Sunday off with a bye before returning to action next weekend. The Rebels will travel to face LSU on Friday night at 7 p.m. before returning home to face the nationally-ranked South Carolina Gamecocks on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.
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