FINAL: Penn State 3, Pitt 1
Pitt men’s soccer team dropped a 3-1 road contest at Penn State Tuesday night at Jeffrey Field.
With the loss, the Panthers move to 6-5-2 on the year, while the Nittany Lions improve to 7-2-2 overall.
Penn State used a late first half goal and two back-to-back goals early in the second to secure the win. Junior Bryce Washington notched the lone goal for Pitt in the 84th minute.
Despite suffering a loss, the Panthers finished with an advantage in shots (18-8) and corners (10-2).
The Nittany Lions got on the board in the 37th minute after converting on a penalty kick.
Penn State opened the second half with back-to-back goals in the 47th and 49th minutes.
Pitt responded in the 84th minute as Washington headed in a corner off the foot of freshman Veljko Petkovic. The goal was the first for Washington this season, while Petkovic now has 13 points on the year good for second-best on the squad.
The Panthers resume conference action Friday, Oct. 18 as they head to Charlottesville, Va., to take on the No. 1 Cavaliers.
· The Panthers rolled past No. 22 Virginia Tech Friday night in Pittsburgh, 3-1.
· Pitt netted three consecutive goals in under five minutes of each other en route to the dominant victory.
· Freshman Valentin Noel got the scoring going in the 72nd minute as he worked his way past numerous Hokie defenders, burying the ball in the lower right corner from the left side.
· Nearly one minute later, junior Edward Kizza drove down the right side and attempted a shot that went in after deflecting off the goalkeeper.
· Freshman Veljko Petkovic capped off the scoring with one of his own in the 75th minute. He received a pass from Kizza at the top of the box and finished with his left foot.
· Virginia Tech scored its lone goal in the 79th minute.
· The win was the first over the Hokies in program history as they lead the series 5-1-4.
· The win was the first over a ranked opponent since a Sept. 25, 2018 win over then-ranked No. 12 NC State, 3-1.
· Pitt finished the game with an 18-12 advantage in shots and concluded the first half with a 10-2 edge.
· In goal, redshirt junior Arie Ammann earned his fifth win of the year and is now 5-2-1.
THE SERIES – PENN STATE
· The Panthers and Nittany Lions clash for the 34th time in program history Tuesday with Penn State leading the series, 23-7-3.
· The two teams last met in 2017 in Pittsburgh, which resulted in a 3-2 overtime victory for Pitt. It was the first win since 1978. Prior to that, the Nittany Lions had claimed nine straight matches.
· Head coach Jay Vidovich is 2-1-1 all-time versus Penn State.
SCOUTING THE NITTANY LIONS
· Penn State enters Tuesday’s game 6-2-2 overall and 3-1-1 against Big Ten foes.
· PSU checks in at No. 10 in the latest RPI ranking released Monday, Oct. 14.
· In their last time out, the Nittany Lions secured a 3-2 overtime victory over Big Ten opponent Northwestern Saturday night.
· Freshman forward Liam Butts leads the squad with 10 points, scoring five goals this season. Close behind is senior Aaron Molloy with nine points off four goals and an assist.
· Penn State is led by second year head coach Jeff Cook, who is 12-11-4 with the Nittany Lions.
· PSU finished the 2018 season 6-9-2 overall and 3-3-2 in conference play, falling in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament.
KIZZA COMMANDING ATTENTION
· Junior Edward Kizza leads the Panthers with 19 points on the year after netting eight goals and recording three assists.
· The 19 points rank him 16th in the national and third in the ACC.
· Kizza ranks 30th in the NCAA and fifth in the ACC with 0.67 goals per game.
· Kizza has scored in six of the 12 games this season, including two double-scoring games.
· Kizza closed out his 2018 campaign tied for third in program history for single-season goals (15) while ranking fifth in points (30).
· The historic season led Kizza to First Team All-ACC honors, Second Team All-Region recognition and a spot on the All-ACC Academic Team.
· The Kampala, Uganda, native picked up right where he left off to start the 2019 season, recording a brace against No. 2 Indiana in the squad’s season-opener Friday, Aug. 30. In the match, Kizza recorded the fastest consecutive goals in program history after scoring at the 35:24 and 35:31 mark, with the seven-second difference besting the old record of 34 seconds set by Michael Tuohy and John Cordier in 2013.
· The freshmen tandem of Veljko Petkovic and Valentin Noel has accounted for seven of Pitt’s 25 goals this year.
· Petkovic ranks second on the team with 12 points with four goals and assists, respectively. He’s recorded two or more points on five occasions this season.
· Noel is just recently starting to make his mark, earning points in four of the last six games.
· He ranks fourth on the team with eight points off three goals and two assists.
· In addition to Petkovic and Noel, Josh Hesson has also made an impact this season. He’s appeared in 11 games and has one goal and one assist.
PITT IN THE RPI
· The NCAA released the first RPI of the 2019 season Monday, Oct. 14.
· The Panthers rank 68th out of 206 in DI men’s soccer.
· Pitt’s highest RPI in program history came in October of 2017 at No. 14.
· Three ACC schools are among the top 10 including No. 1 Virginia, No. 3 Wake Forest and No. 8 Virginia Tech.
· The Panthers begin the final stretch of the regular season, traveling to Charlottesville, Va., Friday, Oct. 18 to take on No. 1 Virginia at 7 p.m.
· Pitt then hosts No. 21 Duke Friday, Oct. 25, before concluding the regular season at Notre Dame Friday, Nov. 1.