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Claessens' Goal Leads USF Over Stetson

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Courtesy USF

Claessens' Goal Leads USF Over Stetson

DELAND, Fla. – On the strength of a second-half goal by junior defender Joris Claessens, the University of South Florida men's soccer team earned its second victory of the young season with a 1-0 win at Stetson, Sunday night.

The score came in the 64th minute as midfielder Kevon Neaves placed a perfect lob from the top-left side over a Stetson defender's head and Cleassens was able to one-time it to the middle of the net from the opposite post.

For Neaves, fresh off his two-goal performance Friday night against UCF, his second assist in as many games gives him six points already on the year.  The Petit Valley, Trinidad native also posted a team-high three shots on goal in the contest.

Claessens earned his first points of the season, scoring the fifth goal of his career.

Jordan Seabrook came close to scoring his third goal in two games, as his shot in the first-half hit the goalpost and was deflected away.

A physical contest, the Bulls (2-0-0) were able to control the pace of play for the majority of the match, wearing down a very young Hatters squad.  Keeper Diego Restrepo was credited with his first career shutout as he stopped all five shots directed his way.

"I felt we played solid defensively tonight," said head coach George Kiefer.  "Diego did a great job in the net.  He stayed sharp to make a great save in particular, even though he wasn't tested very often in the match."

Stetson, led by former USF head coach Logan Fleck, defeated Flagler College in its season opener Friday night.  The loss to the Bulls drops them to 1-1-0 on the year.

USF will return to play next weekend as the team travels to Storrs, Conn., to take part in the UConn/adidas Classic.  The Bulls square off against Florida International Fri., Sep. 7 at 4 p.m. and then take on South Carolina the following day, also at 4 p.m.  South Carolina is on both the NSCAA and Soccer Times polls as receiving votes.

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Where are we ranked nationally? I know we had a very good recruit class.

We are getting preseason votes in the SoccerTimes.com rankings, but note that we beat #20 Saint Louis in an exhibition match.  I imagine the first real rankings will come out this week.


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