Aug. 25, 2017
Follow the Buckeyes on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram | 2017 Schedule | Promotional Calendar | Box Score | PDF: Box Score | Photo Gallery | VIDEO: Match Highlights | VIDEO: Bluem Postgame Interview | VIDEO: Prosuk Postgame Interview
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Junior forward Michael Prosuk scored the game-winning goal in the 90th minute, while redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Parker Siegfried recorded five saves in the 1-0 win over Pitt Friday night at Bert L. & Iris. S. Wolstein Field at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
With the victory in their 2017 opener at the 12th-annual Wolstein Classic, the Buckeyes improve to 1-0-0 overall, while the Panthers drop to 0-1-0.
“Very important win for the team tonight,” 21st-year head coach John Bluem said. “It was a tough preseason, we lost a couple preseason matches to really good teams. Pittsburgh is a really good team, so to hang in there and fight, maybe get outplayed for some stretches of the game, and never give up. Scoring that brilliant goal late in the game was a great thing for our guys.”
THE GAME-WINNING PLAY
Prosuk, a junior transfer from St. John’s, ended the game in spectacular fashion when the 6-6 forward beat Pitt keeper Mikal Outcalt on a one-touch shot from the back post at 89:27. The goal series started with junior midfielder Abdi Mohamed leading speedy forward Marcus McCrary down the right sideline. McCrary, who returned to the pitch after missing the end of last season due to injury, proceeded to fire a low-lining cross through the box to Prosuk who snuck it past the Pitt keeper with 33 seconds to go in regulation.
“We all know Marcus [McCrary] is a pretty fast kid,” Prosuk said. “I knew he was going to take it to his right foot and I knew he was going to put a great ball in. I have been working on my runs all preseason so all I had to do was bring that right from practice to the game and finish the simple tap in to win the team the game.”
Not a bad finish in your first game in the Scarlet and Gray. Prosuk, from Westfield, N.J., scored six goals in two years with SJU. He now has three career game-winning goals.
“Honestly the best feeling in the world,” Prosuk said. “My team and I have working so hard for this moment, and we just wanted to get a great win for the fans. I couldn’t have do it without them.”
SIEGFRIED SHINES IN BUCKEYE VICTORY
The OSU goalkeeper tallied five saves in the contest including a pair of diving stops in both the first and second halves to improve to 1-0-0 on the year. He now has four shutouts to his credit in his career.
“It is a great time of year getting all of these new guys coming together,” Siegfried said. “To have a win like that puts a really good taste in your mouth going into the season. We have been grinding really hard this preseason, it has been the hardest one since I got here, and it is really paying off.”
Siegfried staved off two early Pitt shots on goal in the first half of play, helping anchor the Buckeyes against the early pressure put on by the Panthers’ attack. The first on a dart from the center of the field from 20 yards out in the seventh minute and the second on a one-touch shot from the left side of the box to the short corner in the 10th.
In the second half, Siegfried made another pair of denials. The first was a low laser to the short corner off the foot of Alexander Dexter following a streaking run down the left side of the field in the 69th. The second a save off of a one-touch volley to the low, short-side corner from the edge of the six-yard box off the foot of Pitt’s Javi Perez in the 72nd.
YOUNG BUCKEYES GAIN EXPERIENCE IN SEASON OPENER
The Buckeyes entered the season with 18 newcomers on the roster including 15 freshmen. Three freshmen landed in the starting lineup for the Buckeyes, while six freshmen and eight overall newcomers got their first minutes in a Scarlet and Gray uniform on the way to the Ohio State victory.
Shots: Pitt 16, Ohio State 6
Corners: Pitt 5, Ohio State 3
Saves: Ohio State 5, Pitt 1
Fouls: Pitt 12, Ohio State 12
Ohio State returns to action at 7 p.m. ET Sunday against FIU to conclude the 12th-annual Wolstein Classic. The match will be streamed on BTN Plus.