#15 UCF Wins in Double OT Over UTRGV on PK Goal

Box Score (PDF)

ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) – For the second straight match, the No. 15 UCF men's soccer team was forced into double overtime but got the result they wanted Sunday evening as The Knights defeated the UTRGV Vaqueros by a score of 3-2. Yoni Sorokin scored the game winning goal on a penalty kick in the 107th minute.

"I think what you saw in the first five minutes was us playing the way that we're capable of playing," said UCF head coach Scott Calabrese, "It was a great start to the game from the guys. I felt like we got on the board pretty quickly, but maybe had a few chances to go up 3-0. UTRGV came up with a really good game plan at halftime to disrupt us and they obviously got back in the game."

The Knights wasted no time at all getting onto the score sheet as Cal Jennings netted his fourth goal of the season in the third minute of the match off a nice cross from Richard Amon. Yanis Leerman was credited with the second assist on the goal, as he fed the ball into Amon in the right wing.

Coming into the match, Jennings had scored UCF's last three goals, starting with the game winner against No. 6 North Carolina. He netted both goals in Friday's Penn State and buried another chance against the Vaqueros.

Players, fans and coaches barely had time to collect themselves after the first goal as UCF lit up the scoreboard again 64 seconds later. This time, the goal came from the leg of Andres Hernandez. The ball wound up in his wheelhouse after a corner kick from Louis Perez to the far post where Jonathan Dean was waiting. Dean headed the ball towards the goal, where Hernandez was able to tap the ball home for his first goal of 2019.

"Early in the game, I thought we came out pretty fast," said Jennings, "We were all over them and got a couple chances early. On the goal, Rich played a great ball, put me in and I just had to be in the right place to put it away."

The Knights outshot UTRGV 6-2 in the first half but the score remained 2-0 after Hernandez's goal in the fourth minute. Unphased, the Vaqueros came out with a game plan in the second segment and applied pressure early. UCF goalkeeper Yannik Oettl came up huge in the 53rd minute, stopping a golden chance in front to keep the shutout alive.

"The first half was really good, we controlled the game," said Sorokin, "It looked a little too easy for us I think and we could've done better and finished the game earlier."

The Vaqueros kept pushing after Oettl's acrobatic save and found the back of the net in the 67th minute as UTRGV captain Arthur Rogers lofted up a corner kick that was finished off by Kyle Edwards for his first goal of the year.

Play continued at 2-1 for the remainder of the second half until the very end. URTGV was awarded a corner kick in the 90th minute and cashed in as Rogers earned his second assist of the game with Lukas Moser getting the equalizer with 36 seconds left on the clock.
For the second straight night, UCF was headed to overtime. UCF was the only one able to get a shot away in the first overtime but couldn't convert despite getting two opportunities from corner kicks.

In double overtime, play was continuous, but no shots were taken. In time, Sorokin ended up getting fouled in the box by UTRGV's Bryce Box, awarding Sorokin with a penalty kick opportunity. In the 107th minute, Sorokin netted the deciding goal, beating the goalkeeper who dove in the opposite direction to give the Knights the 3-2 win and avoid tying their opponent for the second straight match.

"As soon as the ref said it was a PK I was happy, because I've waited for these moments," said Sorokin, "That's why a lot of athletes play; it was fun, I enjoyed it."

UCF created plenty of chances in the two overtime periods and held the advantage for most of the extra frames. The Knights compiled a 3-0 edge in corners through the extra time, even though UTRGV had an edge overall in the match 13-8. The Black and Gold held the only two shots of overtime, and that's all they needed to get the win.

The Knights will cap off their three match homestand with a tussle against the VCU Rams on Friday, Sept. 13 at 7 p.m.

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