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Pitt advances to ACC semifinals on Kizza’s golden goal to beat NC State, 2-1

Photo credit: Jared Todhunter
ACC Men’s Soccer Quarterfinal 

FINAL: Pitt 2 vs NC State 1 


For the first time in program history, the University of Pittsburgh men’s soccer team has advanced to the semifinal round of the ACC Men’s Soccer Championship after defeating NC State, 2-1, in the quarterfinal Sunday evening at Ambrose Urbanic Field.

With the win, the fourth-seeded Panthers improve to 9-6-3 overall while the fifth-seeded Wolfpack move to 9-6-3 and are eliminated from the tournament.

The game winner came from junior Edward Kizza who did what he’s been doing so well since he stepped foot in Oakland three years ago — provide clinical finish in the box. It was Kizza’s second goal of the game, and both times he was assisted by Alexander Dexter.


“We had a tremendous start to the match,” said head coach Jay Vidovich. “We had some quick counters and we were finding some joy in that. We had a goal called back when they had to go to the TV to see if went in or not. So, great start to the game, and then I think we kind of faulted out a little bit. We just tried to hang on in the half and I think that continued in the second half. Overtime, I couldn’t have asked anything more of the guys from their heart and mentality, to tactically what they did. It was just fantastic. I’m just really happy for the guys.”

Pitt finished the match with an advantage in shots (11-7) and corner kicks (7-3).

In addition to advancing to the ACC semifinals, Pitt has positioned itself well for an at-large bid in the NCAA Division I tournament. It would be its first appearance in the NCAA’s since 1965.


The Panthers played a solid first half, registering five shots and a goal to lead entering the half. Pitt outshot NC State, 5-0. Kizza got Pitt on the board in the 13th minute after receiving a pass from junior Alexander Dexter. Dexter was racing down the left side and dished it to Kizza who was crashing on the right. Kizza buried the goal for the lead.

The Wolfpack then dominated the second half, outshooting Pitt, 7-5. NC State’s George Asomani found the back of the net in the 54th minute with a strike from the top of the keeper’s box to even the match.

Neither team would be able to score through the remainder of regulation and forced overtime.

The duo of Dexter and Kizza only needed 3:42 to find the golden goal to lift the Panthers to victory. Similar to the first half, Dexter passed to Kizza from the left side. Kizza finished near the left goal post for his 11th score of the season.

With the win, Pitt advances to the semifinals of the 2019 ACC Men’s Soccer Tournament. The Panthers will face the winner of No. 8 Notre Dame vs. No. 1 Clemson at 7:10 p.m. Sunday night. The semifinal match will take place at the higher seeded campus Wednesday, Nov. 13 with the time being announced at a later date. The match will air live on the ACC Network.


5:25 – that’s a wrap from the press box. Look for our post-match reaction on Pittsburgh Soccer Now, as Edward Kizza scored both Pitt goals — both times on the end of terrific build up.

Pitt will play the winner of Notre Dame vs Clemson on Wednesday. Notre Dame plays at Clemson on Sunday night (7 p.m. kickoff).

5:16 – 94′ |  GOAL PITT!!! It’s over — game winner early in 1st Overtime.

5:12 – 1st OT starts

5:09 – Some stats — as things evened out a bit:

Shots:  Pitt 10-7 (3-2 on target), Corners Pitt 7-3. Fouls Pitt 16-14.

Pitt 1, NC St. 1

We’re going to extra time!
It’s golden goal in NCAA / ACC play.

5:02 – 87′ | Kizza breaks behind NC St’s back line — gets into box but couldn’t get a solid shot attempt and GK Durand extends to deny Pitt go-ahead goal late here in 2nd half

4:58 – 85′ | Pitt bringing the pressure!
It’s Nyk Sessock deep on right side of box – bends in shot forcing diving save by NC St’s Vinnie Durrand
4:52 – 78′ | NC St’s Ivy Brisma and David Loera have been providing all kinds of fits for Pitt in midfield and backline past 10 mins or so –looking dangerous on right side.
Can definitely feel shift of this match switch to NC St.

4:46 | 73′ | First subs for Pitt — Kizza and Petkovic come out. Matt Bailey and Chad Stout in for Panthers.

4:45 – 72′ | Couple of dangerous corner chances for NC St — one punched away by Pitt GK Ammann, the other too high.

4:43 – 69′ | YELLOW CARD – Jamie Smith (NC St.)

4:42 – 68′ | Great thru ball for NC St’s David Loera — with point blank chance vs Pitt’s GK Arie Ammann — but the Ammann with a great quick reaction save!

4:34 – NC St’s gets a ‘team yellow card’– not sure what for. 61′ 1-1

4:30- 58′ | Wild sequence few mins ago in front of Pitt goal saw a mad scramble — and near NC State goal but Pitt able to clear

4:28 – 57′ | after earning corner, Pitt knocks it around box for a bit — and Jackson Walti takes a shot from 25 yards out that sails over the bar.

4:25 – 53′ | GOAL – NC STATE – George Asomani
Asomani sends in shot from top of box after Pitt’s defender Arturo Ordonez blocked first attempt with his face.
We’re now tied 1-1

4:23 – 51′ | Fantastic attempt by NC St’s Tyler Gabarra — turns around and drills shot from 12 y/o. Great save by Pitt’s Arie Ammann!

4:15 – 46′ | Whoaaa @Pitt_MSOC with all kinds of pressure in box at the start of 2nd half. Dexter takes too long to pull trigger on shot from inside left side box, deflection is headed on frame by Kizza but NC St’s Pablo Pedregosa heads ball heading into goal away!


Some more pics from Jared…


3:55 – HALF | 1-0 Pitt

Pitt has been the stronger side throughout. Have edge in shots (5-0), corners (2-1) and possession.

And, that goal — terrific build-up and connection of passes between Petkovic, Dexter and Kizza.

3:45 – 41 ‘ | Yellow card to Pitt’s Valentin Noel for hard push off. NC St. Free kick amounts to nothing.

3:33 – 34’ | Kizza nearly makes it 2-0 — but his shot bangs off bar, goes down, but lands outside goal line and cleared by NC St.

Here’s the goal…

3:18 – 12′ | GOAL – PITT
Edward Kizza
Finishes off a splendid build-up on counter attack.
Assist came from Alexander Dexter. Veljko Petkovic initiated the attack with an interception

3:15 – 11’| Pitt playing into a pretty steady wind, with majority of possession thus far but no shots either way.

3:05 – Little hold up for kickoff — must be waiting for ACCNetwork to go live… We’re underway now!

We’ll provide starting line-ups here at approximately 2:45 p.m.

Pitt’s starting XI

Arie Ammann (G), Nyk Sessock, Bryce Washington, Arturo Ordonez, Lucas Cyriacus, Braden Kline, Valentin Noel, Edward Kizza, Alexander Dexter, Veljko Petkovic, Jackson Walti


Sunday, Nov. 3 | 3 p.m. | Ambrose Urbanic Field

TV / Stream: ACC Network | Live Stream.| LIVE STATS.

PSN Coverage:   John Krysinsky– reporting | Jared Todhunter – photography


PSN’s Mark Goodman visited practice this week. Be sure to check out his report including plenty from Pitt’s Head Coach Jay Vidovich and junior forward Edward Kizza.

Revitalized Pitt gearing up for ACC Tournament clash with NC State


  •       The Panthers dropped a 1-0 decision to Notre Dame in their regular season finale Friday, Nov. 1 in South Bend.
  •       Despite outshooting the Fighting Irish, 15-5, Notre Dame scored the lone goal of the game in the 17th minute.
  •       Pitt finished the game with nine corners.
  •       Juniors Alexander Dexter and Edward Kizza each recorded five shots apiece with one on goal.


  •       The Panthers earned the No. 4 seed and first round bye to host the quarterfinals.
  •       The ACC Tournament comes to Pittsburgh for the first time in program history.
  •       The semifinals will be played at campus sites Wednesday, Nov. 13.
  •       The ACC Championship final will take place Sunday, Nov. 17 at WakeMed Soccer Park.
  •       All rounds of the Championship will be televised on ACC Network with the final being aired on ESPNU at noon.


  •       The Panthers and Wolfpack meet for the seventh time in program history Friday with NC State leading the series, 3-2-1.
  •       The two teams last met a year ago in Pittsburgh when Pitt upset then No. 12 NC State, 3-1. Jackson Walti and Edward Kizza both scored in the win.
  •       Head coach Jay Vidovich owns a 21-3-2 record against the Wolfpack, his most wins against any team.


  •       NC State enters Sunday’s game 9-5-3 overall and 3-4-1 against ACC foes.
  •       In their last time out, the Wolfpack beat Duke 2-1 in the first round of the ACC Tournament.
  •       NC State ended its regular season with back-to-back losses to conference opponents.
  •       Sophomore Kuda Muskwe leads the Wolfpack with 11 points off five goals and one assist. Junior David Loera ranks second in points with nine, coming off three goals and three assists.
  •       NC State is led by third year head coach George Kiefer.
  •       The Wolfpack finished the 2018 season 10-7-3 overall and 2-4-2 in conference play. NC State lost to Wake Forest in the ACC Quarterfinals. Maryland ended the Wolfpack’s season in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.


  •       The NCAA released the fourth RPI of the 2019 season Monday, Nov. 4.
  •       The Panthers dropped to No. 36 after previously sitting at No. 31.
  •       Pitt’s highest RPI in program history came in October of 2017 at No. 14.
  •       The Panthers have defeated three teams inside the top 25 in the RPI including #2 Virginia, #8 Virginia Tech and #19 Boston College.
  •       Four ACC schools are among the top 10 including No. 2 Virginia, No. 5 Wake Forest and No. 6 Clemson and No. 8 Virginia Tech.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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