DURHAM, N.C. (August 19, 2006) - Freshman Mike Pezza (Jackson, N.J.) scored in the 18th minute of play as the University of Connecticut men's soccer team battled Duke to a 1-1 draw Saturday night at Koskinen Stadium. The tie stands as the Huskies' third this preseason, while the Blue Devils now hold a 1-0-2 record in exhibition play in 2006.
Just past the 18:00 mark, O'Brian White (Scarborough, Ontario) brought the ball into the 6-yard box, but his shot attempt was foiled by the Duke defense. Ryan Cordeiro (Highland Mills, N.Y.) collected the rebound, however, and played the ball back inside to White, who in turn fed it to Pezza. The freshman midfielder then sent a hard shot from the shallow right corner of the penalty area just beyond the diving keeper, Justin Papadakis.
The Huskies instituted a more deliberate attack than in the last two preseason games, putting up two shots per half. After the early tally from Pezza, additional scoring opportunities were limited until the second half when Akeem Priestley (Kingston, Jamaica) sent an early shot wide right and Chukwudi Chijindu (Fontana, Calif.) later met the same fate with his shot following the Blue Devils' game-tying score.
Duke tied up the ballgame late in the 49th minute when Kyle Helton scored on an unassisted shot sent into the right corner of the net beyond the reach of Husky keeper Matt Sangeloty (Farmington, Conn.). Though Sangeloty was only credited with two saves on the night, the local product was stellar between the posts as he thwarted several cross and corner kick opportunities by the Blue Devil attack.
UConn returns home to open the 2006 regular season Saturday, Aug. 26 at 7:00 p.m. against Loyola Marymount. Individual tickets for the home opener can be purchased by calling 877-AT-UCONN. For group rates, call Assistant Coach Kevin Bacher at 860-486-6824. All UConn students are invited to the pre-game tailgate with more information available .