ORLANDO, Fla. – The No. 13 UCF men's soccer team earned its first victory of the 2021 season, beating UNF by a score of 5-0 on Sunday night.
"We competed and raised our standard in every way tonight," said head coach Scott Calabrese. "You saw the team put the right effort in in every moment. They were on a different level; they were disciplined and their standards were higher."
The match started out in North Florida's favor as they earned four quick corner kicks. The momentum began to shift halfway through the first frame which eventually led to UCF's first goal of the season at the 28-minute mark as Gino Vivi pounded one through a few Osprey defenders for the opening score.
The Black and Gold kept their foot on the gas as they scored again in the 34th minute as Alessandro Campoy worked his way down the middle of the pitch with the ball and made a crisp, short pass to Lucca Dourado who faked with his right foot and finished beautifully with his left for his first goal of the campaign.
Dourado wasn't done scoring though as he was on the receiving ends of a few beautiful passes leading to an outstanding goal via the header in the 62nd minute. Asher J'n Pierre and Franco Loello both picked up their first points as a Knight, as J'n Pierre streaked down the side of the pitch and fed it ahead for Loello, who then quickly put the ball in on a long cross which Dourado was able to head down and in. The multi-game goal for Dourado is the first of his career.
The theme of firsts continued as Lucas Mauro earned his first regular season goal as a Knight in the 80th minute, working the ball down the sideline and then across the 18-yard box, drawing the UNF net minder out and tucking it just past him.
One more goal was added to the board in the dying seconds of the match as Anderson Rosa sprinted down the field to save a ball from going out of bounds and sent it flying into the box. The ball was headed by a defender straight up in the air where a waiting Josiah Ramirez cashed in on the opportunity with a beautiful bicycle kick for his first goal of his career.
Counting last season, 11 of UCF's last 14 goals have come from Vivi or Dourado, with Dourado scoring six of them.
Tyler Lavigne got his first career start in net and made one save in 71 minutes before leaving with an injury after a collision with an Osprey. Matt Douglass came in relief and made a pair of saves for the combined clean sheet.
The Knights outshot UNF by a count of 19-5 and led in the shots on goal 7-3.
The last time that UCF put up five goals was in the American Athletic Conference tournament semifinals against Temple in 2019, when they beat the Owls by a score of 5-0. In that game and the one on Sunday night, each striker had multiple goals. Dourado scored twice on Sunday night while Cal Jennings tallied a hat trick against Temple.
The Knights will travel to Raleigh, N.C. to face a pair of ACC teams. UCF will face No. 15 Virginia Tech in a neutral site match on Sep. 3 at 4 p.m. before facing N.C. State on Sep. 6 at 7 p.m.
Season tickets and individual game tickets for the 2021 men's soccer season are available now. To catch every moment on the pitch this year, click here.
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