The Georgia Bulldogs (2-1) took down the Mercer Bears (1-1-1) 3-0 Friday in front of a crowd of over 1,700 in their first home game of the 2013 season.

UGA wasted no time in this game, peppering the Bears with an early offensive onslaught that included a few different breakaways that resulted in nine first half shots that challenged the Mercer defense.


Georgia finally capitalized on a chance when true freshman forward Marion Crowder used excellent footwork and ball control to lead a breakaway. She pulled up herself 18 yards out and netted the first goal of her UGA career in the 27th minute.

“It’s a feeling you can’t beat; your first collegiate goal as a freshman,” Crowder said. “It was a great opportunity. I saw the opportunity and buried it. It’s great to play for such a great team and to score for them is so awesome. I am excited about it.”

Georgia kept its foot on the gas in the second half. Nicole Locandro made the score 2-0l by nailing a penalty kick in the 51st minute after a Georgia player was taken down in the box.


Rachel Garcia then hit a header, assisted by Madeline Barker, past the goalie in the 69th to give the Bulldogs a 3-0 advantage.

“I thought it was a great team effort,” head coach Steve Holeman said. “We spent a lot of time in their half. We were definitely better at set pieces this game.”

Even with all of the offensive efficiency, most of the praise seemed to be focused on the Georgia back line, which constantly maintained pressure and held the Bears to an three shots the entire game.

“We defended a lot better,” Holeman said. “We really worked on that this week. As we progress the we will face different types of teams that play different different styles. I thought our defensive press, our ability to press the ball was great. Our ability to press in the midfield was good too.”

“Defending as a team and using team pressure, that is what we got better at this game,” Crowder said.

Georgia hopes to keep applying the pressure as it welcomes Furman to Athens on Sunday at 2 p.m.