TAMPA - USF tied Rutgers 2-2 in a double-overtime match that was delayed over an hour due to thunderstorms.
The game began as a defensive struggle, but the offenses picked up as the game progressed.
USF (6-2-4, 1-0-3) remains one of the teams to beat in the Red Division, and head coach George Kiefer is hoping his team keeps fighting to maintain its position in the Big East.
“I think we’re definitely moving in the right direction, Kiefer said. “We just have to keep going.”
The Bulls found the back of the net first in the 28th minute when Lucas Baldin scored his second goal of the season on a penalty kick after he was fouled in the goalie box by Rutgers’ goalkeeper, Kevin McMullen.
USF played with extra intensity on the defensive end after the score—highlighted by a spectacular diving save by Eric Osswald after withstanding a flurry of attacks by Rutgers.
Rutgers (5-4-1, 1-2-1) fought back to tie the score at one when Mael Corboz’s free kick got the Scarlet Knights on the board in the 53rdminute.
Nature intervened in the 57th minute, and play was stopped for approximately an hour due to inclement weather.
Both teams found their offenses following the delay as each team scored a goal in a one-minute span beginning with Rutgers’ Kene Eze goal in the 66th minute to give Rutgers its first lead of the match.
However, Rutgers did not maintain the lead very long as USF responded with a goal of its own in the 67th minute when Samuel Hosseini’s lead pass to Ben Sweat setup Leston Paul for his third goal of the year.
USF and Rutgers each had its chances to win the game in regulation, but the match headed to overtime with both teams tied at two.
After two hard-fought overtimes, the Bulls earned a single point for the third match in a row.
The Bulls will resume play 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 10 at Corbett Soccer Stadium for a non-conference match against Mercer.