No.16 South Florida shook off its early rust to come from an early deficit to move into the second round of the NCAA Division I Tournament with a 2-1 victory against Stetson on Thursday night at the USF Soccer Stadium.
The Atlantic-Sun champion Hatters shocked the Bulls in the eighth minute as Fredrik Brustad scored from 10 yards out to cap a counter-attack, but from then on the Bulls settled down and dominated play. South Florida tied the game in the 14 minute, Javed Mohammed’s corner from the right bending into the far post for Sebastian Thuriere to head home powerfully.
South Florida continued to carry the play for the remainder of the half, Stetson goalkeeper making an outstanding save to deny Bernardo Anor in the 21st minute, but Anor would give the Bulls the lead just under two minutes before the break, Mohammed again providing the cross from the left for the Venezuelan standout to head home from eight yards out.
Stetson came into the game a little more in the second half, but Bulls goalkeeper Jeff Attinella held the Hatters at bay for the final 45 minutes, allowing the Bulls to move on.
South Florida will now face No.1-ranked Akron on Sunday afternoon at 4 p.m. The Zips went a perfect 20-0-0 through the regular season, and defeated the Bulls 3-1 when they faced each other in the preseason.