STORRS, Conn. – Freshman Austin DaSilva tallied his first-career goal for the UConn men’s soccer team on Saturday night, as a very physical match with No. 18 Georgetown resulted in a 1-1 draw at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium.
Another lively crowd of nearly 4,000 fans saw the Huskies (1-2-1) take an early lead on DaSilva’s goal in the 14th minute, but a converted penalty kick by the Hoyas (4-0-1) in the 37th tied the score permanently.
Physicality was the name of the game on Saturday, as three yellow cards were dished out and 27 combined fouls were called between UConn and Georgetown. Both teams got off eight shots in the match.
“We grinded out a result. They are a good team, but it’s still a little disappointing that we didn’t have enough energy tonight,” said head coach Ray Reid. “Hopefully though, it got us ready for Hofstra and North Florida.”
UConn’s key opportunity in overtime came in the 97th minute when DaSilva dribbled into the box along the right side and fired a shot, which was saved by Georgetown goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski.
“DaSilva scored a great goal, then he almost won the game in overtime,” said Reid. “They did a good job of pressing us throughout and it didn’t allow us to get into a rhythm.”
The Husky defense once again shined, as redshirt senior goalkeeper Scott Levene recorded two saves on the night – including a diving stop in the 18th minute to his right. Redshirt sophomore Nkosi Burgess and junior Jacob Hauser-Ramsey stood tough on the UConn back line.
“Nkosi, Jake, and Levene all played great games for us tonight,” said Reid, who coached his team in its third overtime match of the short season on Saturday.
It was Levene who helped send the game to overtime, as his save of a shot by Georgetown’s Achara in the 84th minute kept the game tied. UConn’s best scoring chance in the second half was freshman Blaise N’Gague, who sent his strike just over the crossbar in the 60th minute.
DaSilva recorded his goal in the first half when junior Abdou Mbacke Thiam chipped him a pass over the defense. The freshman striker caught up to the pass and beat Marcinkowski with a breakaway shot to the lower left corner.
A physical game, however, resulted in a Georgetown penalty kick in the 37th minute after senior Andrew Geres took down a Hoya forward in the box. Georgetown’s Christopher Lema beat Levene, making it 1-1.
Play went back and forth for the remaining 53 minutes, as well as 20 minutes from two overtime periods. Georgetown had a 9-2 advantage in corner kicks, while UConn had a 5-4 edge in shots on goal.
The Huskies take on Hofstra on Tuesday night at Morrone Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. (ET).
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