South Florida leads the series 8-7-4. The UC/USF matchup has been played every year since 1995. The Bearcats are unbeaten against the Bulls in Gettler Stadium under Hylton Dayes (since 2001). Cincinnati has held USF to one goal in last five matches in Gettler Stadium.
Head coach Hylton Dayes is in his 12th season at Cincinnati and 23rd as a head coach. Dayes holds an 97-93-32 mark at UC and a 194-177-51 overall record.
Dayes is the second-winningest coach in UC history behind only Bob Muro, who posted a 114-111-13 mark in 12 seasons on the Bearcats sideline.
Cincinnati set a school record with its fifth consecutive shutout against Syracuse on Sept. 29.
Prior to the start of this streak, UC's previous record of four consecutive shutouts came Oct. 27-Nov. 7, 2007. Cincinnati posted a 1-0 win over Villanova, 2-0 win vs. Michigan State, 1-0 win at Rutgers, and 2-0 win at Providence in the 2007 BIG EAST Tournament opener.
Regular starter at centerback Richardo Israel missed the Sept. 26 match against Cleveland State due to accumulated yellow cards. He started the first nine matches of the year. Israel returned to the starting rotation against Syracuse (Sept. 29) and played all 90 minutes.
UC remains undefeated in the BIG EAST with 1-0 victories at Pittsburgh (Sept. 22) and vs. Syracuse. UC is 2-0 in the BIG EAST since 2010 when the Bearcats won three consecutive games to start league play.
The win against the Panthers was the first for the Bearcats in Pittsburgh, having lost, 2-1, to the Panthers in 2006 at Founder's Field.
Senior forward Leon Powell made his first appearance of the season against Cleveland State on Sept. 26. An expected starter, Powell injured his knee in UC's exhibition finale against Michigan and missed the first nine games of the regular season.
Taylor Hafling has posted five consecutive shutouts and has six on the season. He ranks second in the BIG EAST and 15th in the nation in saves with 49 and fourth in the league in saves per game (4.45). Hafling is also tied for the BIG EAST lead in shutouts.
In 2011, UC posted a 6-11-1 overall mark, including a 2-7-0 ledger in BIG EAST play. The Bearcats failed to advance to the BIG EAST Tournament for just the second time since joining the league in 2005.
The Bearcats look to rebuild a defensive unit which needs to replace both center backs and graduated captain and four-year starter Sam Klosterman.
A revamped back line and new starting goalkeeper, sophomore Taylor Hafling, will look to improve upon the 1.6 goals per game allowed in 2011. UC has posted a 0.78 goals against average this season.
A bevy of young but experienced players will take the pitch in 2012, including sophomores forward DeNormandie (18 starts in 2011), defender Will Diebold (14 starts), midfielders Matt Remaley (12 starts), Emmanuel Appiah (12 starts), and Ashani Walker (seven starts).
The Glorious Return of...:
Matt Bahner, a 2010 second-team All-BIG EAST midfielder, returns to the squad for his fifth season after missing the entire 2011 campaign with a knee injury. Bahner led the Bearcats with seven goals and six assists in 2010 and has 12 career goals to his name.
Bahner scored his first goal of the season on Sept. 2 at No. 22 Xavier and scored the game winner against Syracuse on Sept. 29.
Peter Jannelli, who last played with the Bearcats during the 2009 season, started in the midfield in the first two contests, assisting on the game-winning goal in the 1-0 victory against Drake on Aug. 24.
New Kids on the Block:
Five true freshmen and a first-year transfer saw time for the Bearcats in the opening weekend.
Freshman Jacob Martinez scored his first career goal in the 1-0 overtime victory against Gardner-Webb on Sept. 16. Martinez's 98th-minute goal came in his second appearance in the Bearcat uniform.
Manga tallied his first career goal in the 1-0 winn at Pitt on Sept. 22. He was named BIG EAST Rookie of the Week on Sept. 24.
BIG EAST/National Honors:
John Manga was named the BIG EAST Rookie of the Week on Sept. 24 after scoring his first career goal and game winner in the Bearcats 1-0 win at Pittsburgh on Sept. 22 in the BIG EAST opener for both teams.
Taylor Hafling was named to the BIG EAST Honor Roll on Sept. 17 after making 12 saves and posting shutouts against Gardner-Webb and Towson.
Cole DeNormandie was named to the BIG EAST All-Rookie team following the 2011 campaign. He led the Bearcats with seven goals and 15 points.