Florida soccer kicks off its home opener Sunday at noon in new head coach Tony Amato’s first match at Donald R. Dizney Stadium.
The Gators fell 2-1 to USF Thursday in Amato’s first regular season match and look to regain their form at home versus Texas.
Amato attributed the defeat to the team’s lack of cohesive play and said he was disappointed by the result.
“We are trying to win and trying to get results,” Amato said. “We've got some work to do but we saw where we are and we'll get to work”.
The Longhorns suffered a heavy 4-0 defeat to Central Florida to open regular season play. The Knights scored just over a minute into the match and took advantage of Texas’ lackluster defensive structure to notch a victory.
Amato and Co. look to capitalize on their opponents’ glaring shortcomings across the back line to record their first win of the season.
Expect a high-scoring match between teams still trying to find defensive consistency. Despite only conceding twice against the Bulls, Florida’s sophomore keeper Alexa Goldberg tallied 13 saves to keep the game within reach.
Florida should look to get on the front foot early behind graduate transfer forward Kit Loferski and junior midfielder Syd Kennedy, who combined to score the Gators lone goal against USF.
Veteran junior forward Kouri Peace will be hungry to get on the scoresheet as well after she recorded a goal and an assist in Florida’s exhibition match last week.
Amato’s young team will look to their returning stars for leadership in their home opener versus the vulnerable Longhorns. Sunday’s match is the first of a three-match home stand for the Gators, who face in-state rivals UCF and Miami next week.
Kick-off is expected at noon Sunday from Dizney Stadium. The match can be streamed through ESPN+.
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