Mens soccer v. UCSB

The Virginia Tech Hokies made the trek into foreign territory Friday night to battle division rival Pittsburgh. The Panthers, entering the matchup with a 5–4–2 record, looked to upset their ACC coastal rival Hokies who would be coming off of a 0–0 tie to an established No. 5 Clemson team.

The match would not progress as expected for the Hokies, though, as they were able to get next to nothing going on the offensive side of the ball in the first half, with only two shots to show for their effort. Their defensive poise kept them in contention for much of the game as both teams headed into the second half knotted up at zero a piece. Stopping the Hokies from jumping out to a 1–0 would be Panther goaltender Arie Ammann who stopped an incredible shot from inside the box by freshman Daniel Pereira in the 56th minute.

The score would remain at zero for much of the second half as possession alternated between the two teams until the Panthers virtually ambushed the Hokies for three back-to-back goals which would eventually put an end to Virginia Tech’s aspirations to escape the Steel City with a win.

Tech would maintain its dignity, though, and make one final push to reenact the magic that the Panthers had just displayed when junior Jacob Labovitz would put the ball in the back of the net on an assist by James Kasak, his fourth of the season. This assist ultimately led to Kasak being named to Man of the Match honors. It would end in a 3–1 loss with the Hokies on the losing end as they were outshot by the Panthers 18–12 and frankly stunned by a Panther offensive attack of three straight goals.

The loss to Pittsburgh eliminated Tech’s hope of carrying its streak of two straight shutouts through this game to make it a third, but more importantly it creates quite the uphill battle for the Hokies to climb the ACC Coastal standings as they are looking to overcome five other teams with Virginia, UNC and Notre Dame being the three toughest opponents. Virginia Tech will look forward to returning home Oct. 18 to face a versatile and resilient Notre Dame team.

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