Knights draw 2-2 against Jacksonville

The UCF men’s soccer team played the Jacksonville University Dolphins to a 2-2 tie on Friday night. The Knights, who were ranked No. 28 in the nation going into the night, were playing only their second home game of the season.Central Florida was coming off of a 3-1 come from behind victory against UC Davis. UCF was an even 2-2 going into the night, while the Dolphins came into the game 0-5-0.

The Knights threatened early against the winless Dolphins, putting one in the back of the net inside the first five minutes, only to have it nullified by an offsides call.

UCF dominated possession for most of the first half, but the Knights couldn’t get themselves on the scoreboard. Their best opportunity of the half came in the 38th minute, when substitute Anton Sealey took a shot from just inside the box that was bound for the back of the net, until Jacksonville goalkeeper Gavin Carlin came up with the save.

The second half started with a bit of a scare for UCF when in the 54th minute Jacksonville forward, Roshoir Elliot hit the crossbar with his first shot of the game.

Steven Lamberta put the Knights on the board first with his 58th minute goal. The goal put the Knights up 1-0, but that lead would be short lived.

Jacksonville tied the game in the 63rd minute with a goal by midfielder Nick Rodriguez. The goal only marked the second of the year for the Dolphins. The Dolphins then continued to take the lead just minutes later when forward Gavin Craig puts one in the back of the net from just inside the box.

After the game UCF captain Andrew Quintana said, “If you give up two goals, that’s too much.”  Quintana also said, “We can’t keep having teams out-work us,” he added “We’ve got to be harder workers.”

UCF tied the game at two late in the 2nd half with a goal by forward Deshorn Brown, who scored with a shot from inside a crowded 18 yard box. The goal came with 8 minutes left in the game, and saved the Knights from being the victims of Jacksonville’s first win of the year and took the Knights into their first overtime game of the year.

The first overtime saw no scoring by either side, as both teams began to show signs of fatigue after 100 minutes of play. In the second overtime, UCF put some passes together that lead to multiple shots on goal for the Knights, but the Dolphins goalkeeper continued to make the saves. The game ended in a 2-2 tie after two overtimes.

After the game, UCF Coach Bryan Cunningham said about the tie to the winless Dolphins, “not all hope is lost,” Cunningham later added, “We scored two goals, but we could have scored 6 more.” UCF is now 2-2-1, while Jacksonville improved to 0-5-1 on the season with the tie.