USF's Fundraiser Friendly With Pride a Big Hit
By TOM ZEBOLD
USF Senior Writer
TAMPA, MARCH 27, 2017 – USF women’s soccer got super support from the Bay Area community during a memorable fundraiser friendly with the Orlando Pride last Saturday on campus.
About 2,000 fans made exhibition action at Corbett Stadium seem like the regular season, cheering on the Bulls during their dramatic 2-1 loss to the talented National Women’s Soccer League team.
“It was a big fundraiser night for us and the girls were excited for the opportunity to play the Orlando Pride,” head coach Denise Schilte-Brown said. “The girls have been working extremely hard at an intensity level we’ve never worked before in the spring. It’s been really incredible to see this group come together.”
Schilte-Brown was ecstatic about how the community boosted the Bulls in a big way, especially young girls from local soccer clubs helped pack the stands. USF was grateful to have donations flood in to help fund the women’s soccer program’s efforts moving forward.
“It was a tremendous advancement for club soccer and I’m still buzzing about the event,” Schilte-Brown said Monday. “It just showed with a little bit of work, we can get that kind of crowd consistently for this team. They perform at a quality that impresses people.”
Schilte-Brown was more than impressed by the Pride’s willingness to contribute to an event that touched so many people’s lives.
“They were incredible for us and head coach Tom Sermanni is a class act. He’s just a wonderful person and he represents the Orlando Pride so well,” Schilte-Brown said. “The entire organization was tremendous. Ali Krieger went out of her way to take a photo with our team. A lot of the players on our team have been a huge fan of hers. It was an opportunity for them to meet one of their heroes.”
It also was an opportunity for the Bulls to show what they can do against pro players from the top league in the United States. Evelyne Viens, the 2016 conference rookie of the year, tied things up in the 69th minute while USF’s defense shined in a battle that was decided in the 90th minute.
“We were using this as a tool to grow on the tactics we’ve been developing and they played phenomenally,” Schilte-Brown said. “It was 1-1 for 99 percent of the game.”
Last Saturday served as a prime example of how far the Bulls have come as a team, mentally and physically, since winning 12 games last season.
“We’ve been really challenging them to think more about the concepts of soccer, not just do what they’re told to do but think about the why,” Schilte-Brown said. “Developing their soccer brains and confidence on the ball has improved them tremendously.”
Be sure to follow USF women’s soccer on social media (Twitter / Instagram) and visit GoUSFBulls.com for the most up-to-date information. The USF women’s soccer team has posted four consecutive seasons of 10-plus wins and five in the last six years under head coach Denise Schilte-Brown. The Bulls made their first NCAA tournament appearance in 2010 and returned in 2014 & 2015.
- #GoBulls -