The No. 18 USF women’s soccer team got a decisive 2-1 victory over Auburn to start the 2019 season, getting a game winning goal in the 90th minute. The win over the Tigers would avenge a loss early last season in Auburn, where the Tigers would win 2-1 over the Bulls.
USF got the scoring going early with an Evelyne Viens goal in the fourth minute that was assisted by Syndy Nasello. The combination of Viens and Nasello ended up being a nightmare for Auburn’s goalie, as the duo combined for 11 shots with six of them on goal.
In the 34th minute off a corner, Auburn would level the scoring 1-1 on a set piece header by Jessica Gerow. However, USF would continue to apply pressure by any means necessary, and by the end of the night, the Bulls outshot Auburn 19-8.
“[The goals scored] weren’t our only chances to score, we had about four others that were very close, the post, going along the end line” head coach Denise Shulte-Brown said in regards to the scoring chances. “We were looking for that perfect spot, but the girls have to understand that the goal is bigger than the defender.”
USF would continue to hammer shots at the goalkeeper, and finally in the 90th minute with 18 seconds left to play, Sydney Nasello took a pass from Sabrina Wagner and hit a blooper right over the keeper’s fingertips, landing in the back of the net.
Auburn had one last chance with 5 seconds left with a free kick from midfield, but USF goalkeeper Sydney Martinez caught an easy shot to seal the victory for the Bulls.
Martinez would go on to make four saves and a lone goal allowed, but the defense in front of her would fend off many would be chances at a shot. Highlighting the defense is freshman defender Lucy Roberts, who blocked multiple shots on defense own goal while also getting two great offensive chances in front of the Auburn goalie.
USF will have a quick recovery, as they’ll turn their sights to another SEC opponent with the University of Florida coming to Corbett Stadium on Sunday at 6 p.m. The Gators have also received votes in the top 25 and the Bulls will look for their first ever victory over UF.