Mississippi State Soccer Makes Sweet 16 History: with Taylor James Game-Winning Brilliance

Mississippi State Soccer Makes Sweet 16 History: In the showdown under Palo Alto’s Friday night lights, Taylor James etched her name in Mississippi State soccer history. A senior midfielder, she clinched her first career goal off a corner kick, sealing a dramatic 2-1 comeback against Brown University and propelling the Bulldogs into the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament for the first time.

Kennedy White orchestrated the game-winning play with a precision assist off the inbound kick. James, displaying deft skill, spun and connected with the loose ball, steering it past the net. The rain-soaked victory sparked a jubilant celebration, marking a historic milestone for Mississippi State.

Ranked sixth in the region, the Bulldogs now face the formidable No. 2 Stanford in a Sunday clash for a coveted spot in the Elite 8. The kickoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. CT, with the action streamed on ESPN+.

The first half saw both teams locked in a physical battle, keeping the scoreboard dormant. The second half unfolded with a frenetic sequence where the Bulldogs adeptly thwarted four shots from Brown.

The Bears (12-3-2) eventually broke the deadlock. Layla Shell’s precise delivery to the back post found Naya Cardoza, who headed in her third goal of the season, putting Brown ahead 1-0.

However, Mississippi State staged a comeback in the 69th minute. Ilana Izquierdo threaded a ball through the back line, locating White, who skillfully sent it over and into the net, marking her second goal of the season.

Mississippi State Soccer Makes Sweet 16 History

ALSO READ: WSU Cougs Face Mississippi State Bulldogs: in Hall of Fame Showdown

As the weather worsened, with seven minutes left, Izquierdo stepped up for the decisive corner. White initiated the play against the swarming defense, teeing up the ball in midair for James to connect. The 27th game of her career became a defining moment.

Mississippi State emerged as one of six SEC teams in the Round of 32. While Georgia secured victory to reach the Sweet 16, teams like Arkansas, Alabama, South Carolina, and Texas A&M were eliminated from the tournament. The Bulldogs now stand poised for an Elite 8 battle, seeking to continue their historic journey in the NCAA Tournament.

Our Reader’s Queries

What was Mississippi State originally called?

The university started as The Agricultural and Mechanical College of the State of Mississippi (or Mississippi A&M), one of the national land-grant colleges created after Congress approved the Morrill Act in 1862.

When did Mississippi State change from Maroons to Bulldogs?

In 1960, Mississippi State made the switch from Maroons to Bulldogs as their official mascot. However, “Bulldogs” had already been in use since 1905, and it was commonly used alongside “Maroons.” After Walker was fired, Paul Davis was bumped up from assistant coach to head coach.

What channel is Ole Miss and Mississippi State on?

The Ole Miss versus Mississippi State game will air on ESPN for all to see.

Who won the 2023 Egg Bowl?

Ole Miss football sought redemption after a surprising loss to Mississippi State in last year’s Egg Bowl. They achieved their goal in a less than stellar game, securing a 17-7 victory in Starkville.

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