Florida Gators soccer opens 2022 season with 2-0 exhibition win

Special report on the Florida Gators soccer team:

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A goal from two different Gators gave Florida a 2-0 win over North Florida Tuesday evening in exhibition action at the Donald R. Dizney Stadium.

Tonight was Samantha Bohon’s first competition as the Gators’ head coach. She was named Florida’s head coach in May after leading Embry-Riddle for 15 seasons.<https://floridagators.com/news/2022/5/16/samantha-bohon-is-gators-soccer-coach.aspx>

Tuesday’s scoring:
Florida scored in the 34th minute off the first shot of redshirt freshman Sophie White’s collegiate career. A touch pass up the middle by senior Alivia Gonzalez set up the winning strike. White was able to get the 15-yard shot off from the middle to avoid the approaching defenders, scoring at the top left corner.

Senior Syd Kennedy in the 76th minute to close the evening’s scoring. Kennedy created space with a couple of right-left moves before scoring on a 20-yard right-footed shot.

What They Said:
What did you think of today’s performance?
“For the last seven or eight days, we’ve been going against each other. It was good to go up against somebody else that doesn’t know what we’re trying to do and just see how our team handles that game-day experience.

“I loved that we had moments where we were not particularly playing well, and then they fought and they fought to get back. It was nice to see the response and that they could kind of self correct themselves. We’ve been trying to work on teaching them why we do things so that they could adjust mid game and not have to wait for us. I just really liked the heart and the fight and just the connection and camaraderie that they had here.” – Florida Head Coach Samantha Bohon

On starting competition:
“We’ve been working hard for the entire time getting all our reps in. I think all of us can say we were pumped to hit the ground running today and play a real opponent.” – senior Syd Kennedy

On her right-footed goal:
“Oh my goodness. It was a great setup from Sophie [White] and the hard work of the entire team. It was a great feed from Sophie. She said she heard me screaming so that’s always nice to hear. And then I set it up on my right foot which is credit to Coach because she was yelling at me during the game to trust my right foot. So I hit it with my right foot and then I saw it go over the keeper. It was good feeling for sure.” – senior Syd Kennedy

Next Up:
The final exhibition match of 2022 preseason action is Friday versus Tampa.
Date: Aug. 12
Time: 6 p.m. ET
Site: Donald R. Dizney Stadium<https://floridagators.com/sports/2020/4/4/donald-r-dizney-stadium.aspx>
Admission: Free

Today’s Boxscore:
Florida vs. North Florida
Stadium: Donald R. Dizney Stadium

Goals by Period
1    2   3   Total
North Florida                            0    0   0   0
Florida                                     0    1   1   1

Scoring Summary:
1.                    34        UF         Sophie White Alivia Gonzalez
2.                    76        UF         Syd Kennedy

Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.