War on I-4 Resumes

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ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) – The War on I-4 Rivalry Series for the 2017-18 campaign starts up on Saturday with UCF traveling to Corbett Stadium to take on USF. The first meeting between the Knights and Bulls this year kicks off at 7 p.m.
Fans that are unable to make the trip to Tampa can follow the action with streaming video and live stats.

  • The second year of the War on I-4 Rivalry Series begins on Saturday in Tampa with six points on the line.
  • The inaugural year saw the Knights post a 51-33 triumph in the season-long rivalry series, clinching the trophy with a first-place finish by the women's golf team at The American Championship.
  • The Bulls captured the first trophy handed out with a 48-31 home victory on the football field.
  • UCF fell to the Bulls, 2-1, in the regular season meeting last year, which enabled the Bulls to take six points in the rivalry series.


  • The Knights had a streak of 334 consecutive minutes without conceding a goal snapped in the 80th minute of a 1-0 loss to FGCU.
  • The draw against No. 14 West Virginia was the first result earned by since UCF since a 2-2 2OT draw at No. 24 UConn (10/5/13).
  • Junior Jonathan Dean was named The American Defensive Player of the Week on Sept. 11 after helping the back line to consecutive road shutouts at WVU and Jacksonville.
  • UCF used a hat trick from senior Matias Pyysalo to post a 4-0 victory at Jacksonville on Sept. 4.
  • Freshman goalkeeper Yannik Oettl made four stops to record his first-career shutout at Jacksonville.
  • With three goals and six points, Pyysalo paces the UCF attack. He has totaled 13 shots, including eight that have been on target.
  • Freshman Yoni Sorokin has also notched a goal and three assists.
  • A total of 15 saves and a 0.80 goals-against average has been compiled by Oettl.
  • The Knights first home match will be Oct. 4 vs. Stetson after contests were canceled against No. 16 Charlotte (9/1 - inclement weather) and FIU (9/12 -  Hurricane Irma).


  • USF (3-3-0) is undefeated at home with victories over Lipscomb (3-0), Loyola Marymount (1-0) and North Florida (5-1), but has dropped tough away matches vs. No. 17 Butler (3-2 OT), No. 7 Indiana (3-0) and Creighton (2-0).
  • The Bulls are paced offensively by Adrian Billhardt and Bradley Farias with three goals each, while four assists have been tallied by Conzalo Rodriguez and Billhardt.
  • Goalkeeper Christian Knight has started the last two matches, making seven saves and compiling a 0.50 goals-against average in two wins.


  • South Florida has notched a 25-5-4 mark in the all-time series.
  • Since 2010, the Knights have won two of six matchups, going 2-4-1.
  • The Knights dropped a 2-1 OT heartbreaker last year in the semifinals of  The American Championship at USF. It was the first postseason meeting since matches during the 2010 and 2011 NCAA Tournament.
  • USF also captured the regular season matchup with a 2-1 win on Sept. 24.


  • A 344 minute shutout streak for the Knights back line ended in the 80th minute of a 1-0 loss at FGCU.
  • The Knights defense ad not conceded a goal dating back to their match vs. Elon (8/27).
  • During that stretch, UCF secured results at Jacksonville (4-0) and at No. 14 West Virginia (0-0 2OT).
  • Goalkeepers Yannik Oettle and Matthew Rosenberg led the UCF back line - Andreas Steineger, Francios Dulysse, Jonathan Dean and Zachary Waitman - during the four matches.


  • Head coach Scott Calabrese is in his first season guiding the Knights and picked up his first win at Jacksonville (9/4).
  • He spent the past three seasons at FIU, taking the program to its first NCAA Tournament in 10 years.
  • The Newton, Conn., native has compiled an 85-67-20 overall mark and started the program at East Tennessee State in 2008.
  • Calabrese has an experienced staff in Will Clayton, who played and coached at Wake Forest, and Paul Souders, who played for Calabrese at Clemson and coached at New Mexico.


  • Senior Matias Pyysalo was tabbed as The American Offensive Player of the Year by the league's coaches.
  • He tallied a natural hat trick, scoring the final three goals at Jacksonville. It was the first hat trick of his career.
  • The Helsinki, Finland, native tallied six of his 10 goals in conference play.
  • The 2016 American Athletic Conference Player of the Year paced the league with 14 points and delivered game-winning goals vs. SMU (10/1), UConn (10/22) and Cincinnati (11/5)
  • He has totaled 21 goals and 14 assists in his career as a Knight.


  • UCF continues its conference slate on Sept. 29 with an 8:30 p.m. ET meeting at SMU.
  • After playing seven matches away from home, the home opener for the Knights is set for Oct. 4 at 7 p.m. against Stetson.

The UCF men's soccer team is in its first campaign under the guidance of head coach Scott Calabrese and will welcome seven teams to the UCF Soccer Complex. Click here or call (407) 823-1000 for ticket information. 
Membership to Knights Watch, the official supporters group of UCF Soccer, begins at $15 for students and $50 for fans. Packages include tickets to all home contests for men's and women's soccer, a Knights Watch T-Shirt, a soccer scarf and a variety of free catered tailgates. To become a member, click here.

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