Men’s Soccer: Phil Horton scores two goals, adds assist in 3-0 UVA win at #10 Pitt
Lifted by a five-point performance from veteran forward Phil Horton, UVA downed No. 10 by a score of 3-1 at Ambrose Urbanic Field to record its second consecutive victory over top-10 opposition on Friday night.
The ‘Hoos (7-3-0, 3-1 ACC) came out swinging when in the first minute of play. Asparuh Slavov blasted a shot towards goal that bounced around the penalty area taking multiple deflections before falling to Phil Horton who blasted it into the back of the net with just 59 seconds off the clock.
As Pitt Pitt (5-3-1, 2-2 ACC) began to grow into the game, a battle for the midfield began to take place as both teams struggled to dictate the play. With just under half an hour gone in the game, Pitt found the equalizing goal as Noel Valentin curled one into the low corner. Though the Cavaliers would be awarded a penalty in the late stages of the first half, the teams went into the break with the score knotted at 1-1.
After dealing with early pressure from Pitt in the early stages of the second half, Virginia launched a counter-attack in the 61st minute. With a beautiful piece of build-up play, Daniel Mangarov played Phil Horton into the final third who put an incisive pass into Leo Afonso at the penalty spot. An intelligent flick set up Reese Miller to score his first career goal and he did not miss his chance as he put the Cavaliers on top 2-1.
In the 73rd minute of play, smothering pressure from captain Leo Afonso forced a poor back pass from Pitt. With impressive speed, it was Phil Horton who tracked down the ball and fired into the back of the net to seal a 3-1 victory for Virginia.
“The past two results for this team have come against some of the best competition out there right now,” UVA coach George Gelnovatch said. “I am really proud of our guys and the way they continue to battle. This has been a work in progress all season and we are just looking to continue to get better every game.”