TAMPA – The USF women’s soccer team produced plenty of fireworks in front of packed house at Corbett Stadium on Friday night.
Demi Stokes and Olivia Chance each scored twice to help the Bulls start the season with a 7-0 win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff in front of a stadium-record 1,193 fans.
“It’s always good to start off with a win, especially in front of a good crowd,” said Stokes, who added an assist. “It’s a privilege to play in front of all these fans and we appreciate that they all come out.”
“It was good for the whole team. I thought we played well in patches and stuck to our guns,” said Chance, who also finished with one of the USF’s seven assists.
It took the Bulls only 1 minute, 7 seconds to pull ahead in the first half when Stokes found the net with assists coming from Chance and Passariello. Stokes, a junior, now has eight career goals as a Bull after helping Great Britain win a gold medal at the World University Games in Russia this summer.
USF struck again in the 12th minute when sophomore midfielder Jackie Simpson lifted a long lob pass over Pine Bluff defenders for Chance, who beat diving keeper Alyssa Cobbs for the score. Chance, a sophomore, was named to the Big East All-Rookie Team last season after finishing second on the USF squad with four goals and 10 assists.
Chance added her second goal of the game on a corner kick in the 34th minute and the Bulls were back on the scoreboard 22 seconds later when transfer Abnathy registered her first goal as a Bull off a pass from sophomore Sienna Brooks. Abnathy, a redshirt freshman, previously played at Florida State after becoming a four-time all-state selection out of George Jenkins High School in Lakeland.
Stokes found a way to top her first-half feat by scoring her second goal 1 minute, 2 seconds into the second period. Stokes and Jordyn Listro each collected an assist in the 48th minute when Passariello got involved in the scoring. Passariello, a senior, posted a team-high eight goals last season and made the All-Big East Second Team.
Spengler spotted the Bulls a 7-0 lead in the 67th minute off an assist from fellow freshman Alexandra Myers.
USF looks to make it a 2-0 weekend 1 p.m. Sunday when it takes on Texas in Austin.
“It’s always tough to play Friday and Sunday but the girls should be ready and fresh for the game,” head coach Denise Schilte-Brown said.