UA Soccer Finishes Exhibition Play with 2-1 Win Over Wisconsin

“The University of Akron’s Men’s soccer team beat the Wisconsin Badgers by a score of 2-1 at the National Soccer Festival in Ft. Wayne, Indiana on Saturday. The first of the two goals came from sophomore striker Teal Bunbury. Another goal was later added by junior midfielder Anthony Ampaipitakwong.”

The University of Akron’s Men’s soccer team beat the Wisconsin Badgers by a score of 2-1 at the National Soccer Festival in Ft. Wayne, Indiana on Saturday.

The first of the two goals came from sophomore striker Teal Bunbury.

Another goal was later added by junior midfielder Anthony Ampaipitakwong.

The Zip’s strong defense shutout the Badgers until late in the game when a goal was scored by freshman forward Ata Ozbay in the 70th minute.

Akron Head Coach Caleb Porter said, We knew Wisconsin would provide a tough test, especially with the sloppy field conditions.

They were organized and dangerous on restarts which is the type of game we will see a lot this year. Overall, I thought we dealt with it well, but still have much room for improvement.

Akron also beat the University of South Florida Aug. 24th by an impressive count of 3-1.

This was the first time since 2007 that the Zips have battled with USF. The prior meeting was in the first round of the NCAA tournament where USF pulled out a 1-0 win in double overtime, knocking the Zips out of the tournament.

The game started off strong for the Zips as they controlled the offensive side of the ball. The shot count for the game was 16-3 in favor of the Zips.

Many of the shots were credited to Teal Bunbury as he came out striking.

Teal was a handful all night, Porter said.

Sometime in the 21st minute, the shots paid off as Darlington Nagbe found the net.

I thought Darlington was tremendous tonight, Porter said. He is a special player and has the potential to be one of the best players in nation.

It didn’t take long for USF to even the score as Felipe Libreros scored in the 32nd minute.

We had a little lapse on defense and gave up what I thought was a soft goal, Porter said. But we’ll look at the film and address that. I was very happy, however, with the way we responded.

The Zips quickly gathered themselves and continued their strong work on the offensive side of the ball.

Nagbe drew a penalty kick just before halftime on an impressive offensive drive. Junior midfielder Blair Gavin took the penalty kick and found the net to put Akron up 2-1.

To cap off the win, third year sophomore midfielder Michael Nanchoff found the net on an assist by Teal Bunbury in the 88th minute.

Overall, I was happy with the way we played tonight against a top-15 program and a quality opponent, Porter said.

I was also really pleased with the play of our freshmen. Specifically, Ben Speas, who started the second half, showed that he can really make an impact.

Speas is a freshman midfielder who was a part of Akron’s number one recruiting class in the nation.

The Zips truly have a home field advantage at Lee Jackson Field and it is paying off for the team.

We have outstanding support here at Akron and the people in the stands and the AK-Rowdies are big reasons why we play so well at home, Porter said. Their support makes a huge difference.

The 2-1 win over Wisconsin wraps up exhibition play for the Zips after posting a 2-0 record.

With a couple of games under our belt, I know our players are looking forward to turning it up another notch heading into the opening weekend, Porter said. SMU and Tulsa are very good teams and we will need to be at our best.

Akron will start the regular season on the road at the Radisson Tulsa Airport Classic.

The Team is set to play SMU on Friday and Tulsa on Sunday.

Akron will not play a home game until Sept. 18th when they take on Coach Caleb Porter’s alma mater, Indiana.