It was looking hopeless for the Huskies in the first half, but a resilient UConn squad came from behind to prevail over Sacred Heart Tuesday night by a score of 2-1.
With less than two minutes left to play in regulation, Abdou Mbacke Thiam received a high pass from Felix Metzler and then went to work. Thiam broke free, got past the defense, drew the keeper out and put a ball with a lot of touch into Sacred Heart’s net. Metzler was credited with the assist. Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but the goal by Thiam made the difference. It was his eighth goal of the season.
“I asked our guys not to give up a second goal, and I knew that we would score more than one,” Thiam said.
In the 39th minute, Sacred Heart (2-9-1) freshman Segundo Navarro scored the first goal of the game off a great pass from midfielder Oscar Curras. UConn (7-2-1) looked lost in the first half and couldn’t get anything going for themselves. Though the Huskies led the first half in shots 6-3, they didn’t look like the No. 12 team in the country that they are
The UConn team that came out onto the field to begin the second half looked much more like the Huskies that we’ve come to expect to see at Morrone.
“We told them to play with urgency, but not to panic,” head coach Ray Reid said. “We have to have urgency, but we have to be composed, and I thought they did a great job with it.”
UConn tied the match at 1-1 thanks to the dynamic duo of Thiam and Dayonn Harris. A beautiful cross by Thiam found the foot of a sliding Harris to break the seal in the 65th minute for the Huskies.
“This guy [Thiam] sets up Harris’ goal, scores a great goal to win it, for me he’s like a dream,” Reid said.
UConn dominated in shots, totalling a whopping 18 shots over the duration of the contest, 12 of those coming in the second half. The Pioneers, on the other hand, only managed to get two shots off in the second half. Reid credited his team’s resilience as the reason why they were able to come away with the victory last night.
The Huskies play their next game Friday on the road at UCF (8-2-1) for what’s sure to be a competitive match with their conference rival (but it’s still no civil conFLiCT). UCF has been hot lately, winning their last three games in a row and outscoring opponents 14-4 over that span. The Golden Knights found themselves ranked No. 19 in the country after their last win over Tulsa.
Sean Janos is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.