Mountain Hawks can’t overcome early deficit, fall to No. 3 Pitt on the road
09/10/2021 | 19 o’clock
PITTSBURGH – The Lehigh men’s soccer team fought body and soul but couldn’t quite overcome the firepower of Pitt No. 3 and fell 2-1 to the Panthers on Friday night at Ambrose Urbanic Field. The Mountain Hawks (0-3-0) scored late in the 86th minute through Bratislav Petkovic, but Pitt’s defense kept the deficit to just one goal.
When we were up against one of the best teams in the country we knew we didn’t want to open the game against them because it’s not intuitive how they wanted to play, “said Dean Koski, head coach of the Ingrassia Family Men.” So we knew that we had to be defensive and try to counter when we had a chance, and it worked out as we’d hoped it would from the start. We agreed for them to have the ball. We just wanted to make sure we weren’t exposed.
“Frustratingly I thought that we did everything we had to do until we couldn’t find a runner in the last 30 seconds of the first half, they came in behind us and scored a goal late. We really wanted out of half at Zeros come out so we can regroup and put pressure on them to go into the second half. To our boys credit, they regrouped and came out in the second half and made some changes. “
Lehigh’s offense gained the upper hand thanks to a shot on goal by Josh Luchini in the 13th minute, followed seconds later by a chance from Perry Kingson. Four Pitt shots within 15 minutes missed the target as it went 0-0 by the end of the first half.
Senior goalkeeper Noah Sutherland saved two saves in the 44th minute, while Veljko Petkovic hit the goal in the 45th minute and led Pitt 1-0 into the locker room.
Pitt led the chances in the first half at 10, as opposed to Lehigh’s three. Sutherland stopped three shots during this time.
Luchini registered his second shot on goal of the game, a team save that kept the Mountain Hawks off the board in the 49th minute.
In the next nine minutes, three shots in a row by Pitt went wide, while Bertin Jacquesson missed in 63rd position in the top right.
Rodrigo Almeida gave the Panthers a 2-0 lead in the 76th minute after a presentation by Jasper Loeffelsend, but it was Bratislav Petkovic who brought the Mountain Hawks to one point in the 86th minute without support.
“Bratislav’s goal was a counterattack and he picked up the ball in midfield and it was thanks to him, he drove behind, they dropped and when he was at the shooting range he threw the ball really deep into the far post . ” said Koski. “He did a great job, his instincts were good and I think Bratislav was fun to score, especially when his younger brother (Veljko) scored too. I was very happy for Bratislav tonight. We are not celebrating a defeat . ” but we know we made some progress today. “
Pitt’s defense kept Lehigh without a shot for the final five minutes and got away with a 2-1 win.
Recovering from a shocking 2-1 loss to West Virginia on the road on Monday night, the Panthers claim their second win over the Mountain Hawks, dating back to the 2019 NCAA tournament. Pitt improves to 2: 1-0 at the beginning.
Lehigh was eliminated 16: 5, including 6: 3 on shots on goal. Sutherland parried four shots at one of Pitt, while the Panthers took the lead with corner kicks (6: 1) and fouls (12: 8).
Luchini led with two shots while Kingson, Petkovic and Michael Tahiru each had one.
We are making progress and I think that in every game it is good if we take a step forward, ”said Koski. We are glad we had this game and we will continue to challenge our program. It was also really good to get Trevor Koski back on the field for the first time this season. The last time he played in exactly this field was in 2019.
“He only got him to play for a few minutes and tried to get him fit, he definitely calmed us down out there. I think the more Trevor plays, the more we can play how we want to play.”
The Mountain Hawks head off again next Friday to take on Rutgers, who are still looking for their first win of the 2021 campaign. Lehigh is trying to avoid his first 0-4 start in a season since 2012 (0-7).
“On the way to the Rutgers game, we just have to keep doing what we’ve been doing week after week,” said Koski. Come to practice, work hard, try to work on the things we need to improve, have a good mentality, put the team first and just invest the time to get better, invest The time to work hard.
“Not every game is about who is the best team on the field. Sometimes it’s about who works harder, who defends better and who wants more think that we can not only be successful with our games outside the league, but also with our league games. Every game has to give us the opportunity to grow and get better. “
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Gallery: (March 9th, 2021) Men’s football in Pitt, September 4th, 21st