Spring Rolls on for Men's Soccer|
April 4, 2014
CINCINNATI - Spring training has continued on for head coach Hylton Dayes and the University of Cincinnati men's soccer team. The Bearcats most recently played the USLPro's Dayton Dutch Lions to a 2-2 draw.
"It was a good opportunity for us to see how we measured up against a pro team and I thought we held our own," Dayes said.
The Bearcats scored both goals in the first half, capitalizing on early control of the tempo. John Manga (Lexington, Ky./Henry Clay) netted the first goal roughly 15 minutes into the match. He finished at close range from Will Diebold (Coppell, Texas/Jesuit College Prep).
UC's second goal came from Diebold on a combination from Ashani Walker (Kingston, Jamaica/Jamaica College) at the top of the box. Both Cincinnati goals came against former Cincinnati keeper Matt Williams, who is in his third season with Dutch Lions.
Taylor Hafling (Louisville, Ky./Male) started in net for the Bearcats. He made an impressive reaction save early to keep the game scoreless before preserving the 2-0 lead at halftime when Alex Gill (Beavercreek, Ohio/Beavercreek) came on in relief.
Dutch Lions made several changes at halftime and quickly began to turn the tide.
"I think we got a little fatigued as the game wore on and this created some gaps defensively, which Dayton exploited," explained Dayes.
The Bearcats allowed two goals late in the match, including the equalizer with two minutes left, which provided the final 2-2 score. Manga had an opportunity late to give UC the decision, but mishit the shot.
"Overall, I thought we played well for 70 minutes," Dayes said. "I have to give a lot of credit to our guys. They battled well against a quality team that really put us under pressure late in the game."
The Bearcats have a pair of friendlies remaining against collegiate competition this spring. They visit Eastern Illinois on Sunday, April 6, before a trip across the Ohio River to play at Northern Kentucky on Tuesday, April 8. The match at NKU is to replace a match at Kentucky on March 29 which was cancelled due to weather.
UC will then host its annual alumni match at Gettler Stadium on Sunday, April 13, at 1:00 p.m.