- The University of Connecticut men’s soccer team battled Pittsburgh to a 2-2 tie in double overtime in BIG EAST Conference action on Tuesday night at Founders Field.
Tonight's contest between the Huskies, now 8-3-6 overall and 5-3-2 in the BIG EAST, and the Panthers (7-6-3, 3-5-2 BIG EAST) was the 18th meeting of the two programs.
Junior Toni Stahl (Tuusula, Finland) netted his first goal of the season with 13 seconds left in regulation to tie the score at two and send the game into overtime. Freshman Tony Cascio (Gilbert, Ariz.) played the ball forward from the middle of the field to Stahl who shot from the right corner of the 18-yard box into the corner of the net at the far post.
Pittsburgh scored first in tonight’s conference match-up at 25:28 as Mike McDade got a foot on the ball off an indirect kick from 25 yards out, sending it into the lower left corner of the net.
The Huskies came out of the locker room in the second half controlling the tempo and speed of the game in the cold and wet conditions as the weather did not hold up for the BIG EAST contest. Junior Joe Boa (Brookfield, Conn.) was able to tie the contest at one a piece as Stahl played the ball forward to Cascio who dodged three defenders to send a pass in front of the net to Boa. Boa then turned and found an opening at the far post for his first career goal.
Josh Ford (Liverpool, N.Y.) continued to give the Huskies solid minutes in goal as he recorded six saves on the night. A key stop came early in the second half as Ian Farnsworth broke away down the right side of the field and drilled a shot at the goal but Ford was able to come out of the net and make a sliding save to keep the score knotted at one. Pittsburgh let off another line drive from the top of the 18-yard box but Ford was able to get his gloves on it.
The Huskies continued to attack the Panther defense as junior Mike Pezza (Jackson, N.J.) crossed the ball into the box but Pittsburgh goalkeeper, Eric Barnes, jumped out and grabbed the ball just before senior Caesar Lopez (Orlando, Calif.) was able to connect on it. Cascio answered with a shot of his own with 6:30 left on the clock as he fired the ball from the top of the 18-yard box, which was saved by a diving Barnes. Just seconds later, sophomore Greg King (Queensland, Australia) sent a cross into the box which found Boa for a header that was grabbed out of the air by Barnes, just inches from the goal.
Pittsburgh's go-a-head goal came in the 88th minute as E.J. McCormick cross the ball into traffic in front of the box as Farnsworth one-timed into the net to take a 2-1 lead with 2:03 left in the game. But the Huskies did not give up as they battled back into the game. Stahl picked up his first goal of the year with 89:47 on the clock to tie the game and force the overtime periods.
The Huskies will next host Seton Hall University on Friday, Oct. 31 for an 7:00 p.m. BIG EAST Conference match-up at Morrone Stadium. The Halloween contest will also honor the Huskies’ six seniors prior to the start of the game for their last regular season match of their collegiate careers.