TAMPA -The University of South Florida men's soccer team closed out the USF Soccer Stadium tonight with a spring exhibition fundraising match against FC Tampa Bay of the North American Soccer League, and didn't have the outcome that it had hoped for as the Bulls' foe defeated USF 3-0.
But as is the case quite often in these types of games the final outcome is not the only measuring stick.
"This was a good opportunity for our kids to see a team the caliber of FC Tampa Bay," said USF head coach George Kiefer. "It was also a chance to see where our team stands at this point in the spring, who was going to step up against a quality professional team and who needs to work even harder during the summer. I think we had a chance to see that."
The Bulls, who tied FC Tampa Bay just under a year ago 1-1, fell behind in the first half with 22:57 left before the intermission when Keith Savage connected off a free kick bending the ball from left to right around USF's defensive wall giving FC Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead.
The Bulls would then get what would be their best chance of the game to put the ball in the back of the goal, when Sebastian Thuriere took a misplayed ball by FC Tampa Bay goal keeper Daryl Sattler and almost beat the net minder. Sattler, however, would recover and make a save keeping his team's one goal advantage.
USF would come out in the second half and looked to step up the pressure as it fired off four of its five shots in the final 45 minutes of play.
Thuriere, who missed all of the 2010 campaign with a torn ACL in his knee, got his second shot of the match on as header off a Lucas Baldin corner kick, however the opportunity went just over the cross bar 13 minutes into the second stanza.
FC Tampa Bay would put the game out of reach with a goal in the 67th minute by Aaron King off a Keith Savage assist, and then closed out the match with a goal by Omar Jarun off a David Hays pass in the 70th minute.
Eric Oswald recorded eight saves for the Bulls while logging 90 minutes of action.
In addition to Thuriere, Baldin, Christopher Waugh and T.J. Roehn also logged shots.