After allowing two early goals, #23 USF Women's Soccer fought back to stay unblemished on the young season with a 3-2 over Kentucky in Lexington on Thursday night.
It appears Coach Schilte-Brown has begun to find most of her starters. The starting XI of Kat Elliott, Hrabbo Hauksdottir, Lotta Fennefoss, Yasmine Hall, Kelli Burney, Andrea Hauksdottir, Jordyn Listro, Trudi Carter, Evelyn Viens, Gudren Sigurdardottir, and Leticia Skeete saw 10 repeats from the last match, the sole difference from the Sunday lineup vs FIU was the switch of Hall for Aubrey Megrath.
Kentucky started extremely strong, forcing the USF (3-0-0) defense to make plays early. It didn't take long for the probing Wildcats as in the 11th minute, UK's Gina Crosetti found herself all alone in the middle of the box and promptly buried the ball in the top right corner.
Later in the 25th minute, UK's Marissa Bosco slipped a shot between the legs of Fennefoss to exploit an out-of-position Kat Elliott to put the Wildcats up 2-0.
That lead would last less than a minute, freshman Evelyn Viens brought down a misplayed ball near the top of the box, turned and fired to open her USF account.
For the first 25 minutes, USF found themselves unable to gain any traction offensively or defensively. But after the Viens goal USF managed to shut down the UK attack, not allowing the Wildcats a good look for the rest of the half.
USF got a fast start after intermission, tying the game in the 53rd minute. Andrea Hauksdottir sent in a free kick that found its way to forward Leticia Skeete, who notched her third brace of the season.
Jordan Tuttle iced it in the 62nd minute, sprinting across the top of the box and sending a rocket through the legs of a defender and past the keeper for her first career goal.
Kentucky made a few late game pushes, but couldn't cash in. By the end of the game, Kentucky had mostly worn themselves out to the point where their attacks were quite easy for USF to repel.
The slow start was quite worrying for USF fans, but it's good to know that the young offense can come back from large deficits. The defense picked up significantly after the second goal, similarly to the FIU game.
USF returns home vs UMass Sunday at 1:00 p.m.
Highlights via SEC Network
- Shots were 16-15 in favor of Kentucky, eight on target for UK to USF's five.
- USF was booked twice: Leticia Skeete in the 15th minute after pulling up on a 50/50 ball that resulted in a mild collision with the UK keeper, and Jordyn Listro in the 27th minute on a poorly timed tackle.
- Soon after Viens' goal in the first half, she ended up on a breakaway. The UK keeper came out to block the shot and ended up tripping Viens, preventing her from taking a shot. The ref allowed play to continue. The bar kind of went quiet as those of us watching on a laptop roared for a red card and a penalty.
- The commentators went on and on and on and on about the fact it was 88 degrees and humid, or what we in Tampa call "every freaking day from early April to late November."