ST. LOUIS – Saint Louis senior forwards Kingsley Bryce and Robert Kristo scored to propel the Billikens to a 2-0 victory over Tulsa Thursday in the first round of the 2014 NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship at Hermann Stadium.
With the win, the Billikens (14-4-2) advance to face Louisville on Sunday in Louisville, Ky. Game time is scheduled for 5 p.m. (CT). Louisville, the No. 13 overall seed, received a bye to the second round. Tulsa’s season comes to a close at 11-6-3.
It was the Billikens’ 12th shutout of the year, which is tied for the third-most all time in school history (1989, 1990 and 1993).
“The guys did a great job in what was a really tough game,” SLU head coach Mike McGinty said. “Tulsa is not an easy matchup. We knew how good they were and did not look past them. Our guys found a way to win, which is what it takes in November.”
Bryce recorded the eventual game-winning goal at 63:20 of the second half. Kristo started the scoring play with a nice move on the endline. The Tulsa keeper was unable to corral Kristo’s shot, and it came to Bryce, who poked it in from three yards out. It was Bryce’s sixth goal of the season.
It was Kristo’s turn later in the match. He received a pass from Bryce on the right flank and fired from about 20 yards for the insurance tally. It was Kristo’s team-leading 14th goal of the season.
“Tulsa is one of the top teams in America, and with the way they play they are not easy to beat,” Kristo said. “This is a happy feeling, but we aren’t done yet.”
“We all wanted this one,” Bryce said. “Everyone contributed to this win. We had guys come off the bench and show just as much heart as anybody.”
SLU goalkeeper Sascha Otte made three saves for the shutout. Shots were even at 10 apiece, while SLU held a 6-1 advantage in corner kicks.