Men’s Soccer - USF 2-0 Tulsa
The USF men’s soccer team beat Tulsa 2-0 on a wet, wet, wet Thursday night at Corbett Soccer Stadium.
After a disappointing loss at Cincinnati last Saturday, the men bounced back with a strong win in a grudge match against the two-time defending AAC champions. Nazeem Bartman opened the scoring in the 11th minute from the top right corner of the box with a missile to the far post after receiving a through ball from Melvin Becket. An assist also went to Prosper Figbe, who sent Becket and Bartman on the break.
Becket scored in the 38th minute off a breakaway down the left side off a long ball from Figbe. Becket outran the Tulsa back line and slotted the ball near post for his first goal of the year.
The Bulls were easily the better team, despite being outshot 17-11 at the end of the game. Tulsa had shots late, but nothing ever really truly threatened. Keeper Spasoje Stefanovic had five saves on a night where the conditions could have been a nightmare for keepers. It was one of USF’s best performances of the season; now they need more of them to make a run at the conference title.
Women’s Soccer - USF 1-1 UCF
The women’s soccer team drew UCF 1-1 in the third event of the newly established War On I-4 series in Tampa on Friday evening.
Both teams battled a strong wind that blew straight down the pitch to the east net. USF gave up an early goal in the 12th minute when a UCF cross was flicked to the far post, where it bounced off the inside of the post and in. USF looked for a response in the first half, but saw just about all their through balls get blown down the pitch for UCF goal kicks.
The Bulls did find their equalizer in the 35th minute, Trudi Carter controlled a ball at the top of the box, looking for a shot. As she looked for a shot, she was fouled to the ground. The ref made no signal that he had even seen a foul, and the crowd roared in protest. Trudi, however, from the ground, poked the ball across the top of the box to Gudrun Sigurdardottir, who made one move around her defender and blasted it top shelf.
Breaking news: Trudi Carter is good at soccer. She burned the poor UCF right back all night long and created many, many chances for the Bulls. Carter and Evelyne Viens were forces up top, and both deserved to score on several occasions. Viens had a notable late rip that just went wide of the far post.
The game went to two overtime periods, and the team that had the wind at their back was the more offensive each period. UCF nearly won in the first overtime with a shot that clanged off the post and across the face of goal (and to be frank, nobody is sure if it actually went in or not). USF had their chances in the second period, but couldn’t find the winner.
The Bulls looked quite good late in each half, but allowed UCF pressure early in each regulation half. They defended well and had the better looks of the match. They’ll need to pick up a win, however, in their next game to stay alive for the regular-season conference title.
The men return to action at Florida Gulf Coast on Tuesday, while the women travel to Temple on Thursday.