TAMPA – Head coach George Kiefer was pleased with the way the Bulls managed to leave Villanova with a point Saturday afternoon.
Brenton Griffiths put the USF men’s soccer team ahead in the second half and the Bulls battled through two overtimes of a 1-1 tie with the Wildcats. USF (6-2-2, 1-0-1) went ahead in the 66th minute when Griffiths tapped in the score off nice setup passes from Sebastien Thuriere and Roberto Alterio.
“I feel like we created real chances to win the game, we were just a little unlucky not to get the go-ahead goal in the overtimes,” Kiefer said.
Villanova (7-2-1, 0-0-1) got even in the 83rd minute, but the USF defense held tight the rest of the way while keeper Eric Osswald made nine saves.
“Villanova is very direct, so you’re having to deal with a lot of second balls,” Kiefer said. “I thought the entire back four was good and Eric took a lot of pressure off us with his ability in the air, communicating and doing a good job for us.”
Kiefer also was happy that USF managed to finish the game with no injuries after playing on an overused surface that the coach said was far from ideal.
“I’m really pleased because Villanova is probably one of the worst soccer fields in the country. You can’t really play much soccer on the ground on it. If you do, you’re going to be in trouble,” Kiefer said. “I thought our guys adjusted really well to it, and to go to Villanova and leave with a point I think is a testament to the group.”
USF looks to remain undefeated in Big East play 7 p.m. Wednesday, when it plays at Cincinnati. The Bulls’ next home game is Saturday, Oct. 6 against Rutgers back at Corbett Soccer Stadium.