Friday Night Lights: No. 2 Bobcats face No. 3 Iona in MAAC Men's Soccer Championship Semifinals at 7 PM
#2 Quinnipiac University Bobcats (9-4-5, 7-1-2 MAAC)
#3 Iona College Gaels (10-6-2, 7-2-1 MAAC)
Friday, November 15, 2013 – 7 p.m.
Lessing Field – Fairfield, Conn.
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|Quinnipiac Game Notes|
|MAAC Championship Page|
2013 MAAC Championship
The Quinnipiac University men's soccer team (9-4-5, 7-1-2 MAAC) won eight of its final 11 games to close out the regular season, and claimed a share of the MAAC Regular Season title. Up next for the Bobcats is the 2013 MAAC Championship, where they enter as the second seed and take on third-seeded Iona College (10-6-2, 7-2-1 MAAC) in the semifinals on Friday, Nov. 15 at 7 p.m. The first semifinal features top-seeded Monmouth against fourth seeded Manhattan at 4 p.m. All the action takes place at Lessing Field on the campus of Fairfield University.
2013 MAAC Men's Soccer Championship Schedule
Friday, Nov. 15, 2013 Semifinal: #4 Manhattan at #1 Monmouth 4:00 PM
Friday, Nov. 15, 2013 Semifinal: #3 Iona at #2 Quinnipiac 7:00 PM
Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013 MAAC Championship: TBA 1:00 PM
On The Air
All Tournament games will be streamed live on MAAC TV at MAACSports.com. Courtesy of Fairfield University Athletics, live stats for each game will also be available. Each link can be found on www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com.
As they have done so all season, the Quinnipiac Bobcats Sports Network will be alongside to broadcast all Quinnipiac matches throughout the tournament. Tune into TheQBSN.com to listen to the call from Lessing Field.
How The Bobcats Got Here
Needing a win and a Monmouth loss in the regular season finale, Quinnipiac did its part when the Bobcats found the game-winner in the 105th minute of play to defeat Rider, 1-0. Just minutes after that, Canisius College found the game-winning goal in overtime to defeat Monmouth, 1-0; propelling Quinnipiac into a tie for first place in the standings. It's the second consecutive regular season title for the Bobcats after winning the first one in program history last year. The MAAC tie-break rules deemed Quinnipiac as the second seed by virtue of its head-to-head result with Monmouth.
2013 NCAA Tournament
The winner of the MAAC Championship will receive the league's automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament. First round NCAA action begins November 21 on campus sites.
Quinnipiac In DI Playoffs
The Bobcats will make their sixth Division I conference playoff appearance this weekend, holding a 1-5 mark all-time in tournament play. The Bobcats lone win came back in 2009 when they outlasted St. Francis Brooklyn in penalty kicks in the Northeast Conference Semifinals to advance to the championship game. The Bobcats fell in the semifinals last year, falling short in penalty kicks to Saint Francis University.
Scouting the Gaels
Iona wrapped up a successful regular season with a 10-6-2 record overall and a 7-2-1 record in MAAC competition. One of three teams with seven wins in league play, one more Iona loss kept them behind Quinnipiac and Monmouth in the standings. Led by two potent scorers, the Gaels boasted one of the most effective offenses in the league with 27 goals on the season. Franklin Castellanos leads the team with nine goals and 13 assists, while Ignacio Maganto has nine goals and three assists thus far. Iona also presents one of the top defenses in the league, sitting right behind Quinnipiac and Monmouth in goals allowed.
All-Time Against Iona
The series dates back to Quinnipiac's very first Division I season and features several close games between the two programs. The Bobcats hold a 2-1-2 record against the Gaels, which includes an overtime win in 1998 and a convincing 3-1 win in 2009. Quinnipiac and Iona played through 110 minutes of grueling back-and-forth action before both teams settled for a 0-0 draw at the QU Soccer Field in their lone meeting this year.
Scouting the Hawks
Monmouth suffered its first loss in over a month its last time out against Canisius. After a difficult non-conference slate that featured five losses, Monmouth, just like Quinnipiac, greatly enjoyed competition in the MAAC. The Hawks went 7-1-2 in conference play and with its win over the Bobcats earned the top seed of the tournament. Monmouth features a balanced attack with nine players in the scoring column this season, but has seen most of its offense from Jacob Rubinstein and Dave Nigro. Rubinstein has four goals and one assist, which include two game-winners from Rubinstein. Nigro has three goals and one assist. In goal for the Hawks, Eric Klenofsky has emerged as the starter at the strength of a 0.27 goals against average and a .880 save percentage.
All-Time Against Monmouth
The Hawks have fared well in the all-time series dating back to the inaugural meeting when QU first joined NCAA Division I. MU is 12-3-2 against QU and 8-0-2 in their last 10 meetings. Back on Oct. 26, the Bobcats suffered its first loss in MAAC play in a 1-0 decision at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, N.J.
Scouting the Jaspers
The Jaspers are making their first appearance in a four-team conference tournament since 2001. Manhattan is led by Dan Laguna Kennedy, whose seven goals and 14 points lead the team. Eugene Heerschap is next in line with four goals and eight points, while Tommy Amos is the team leaders in assists with four. Alex Shackley, Daniel Festa, Reese Akers and Dominic Chavez have added two assists apiece, while Shackley has also contributed two goals. Andrew Melitsanopoulos scored twice in a pivotal come-from behind 3-2 win over Marist on Nov. 2. Eli Bunton has a goal and an assist. Alex Coates-McDowall has seen the clear majority of time in net, posting a 1.64 goals-against average and a .696 save percentage.
All-Time Against Manhattan
Quinnipiac and Manhattan have met three since the Bobcats joined the NCAA's highest division back in 1998. The first meeting was back in 2005 when Quinnipiac claimed a 2-1 victory in Hamden. The second meeting took place a year later, in which the Jaspers evened the series with a 2-1 triumph of their own. In their most recent meeting, the Bobcats regained bragging rights with a 2-0 victory at Gaelic Park on Oct. 23.
Coach of the Year
Head Coach Eric Da Costa is currently 64-65-31 overall (.497) and 40-30-16 (.558) in conference competition. Da Costa was named Coach of the Year by his peers in 2012.
Regular Season Champs Again
The Bobcats won their second consecutive regular season conference title this year. Quinnipiac is 8-1-2 in their last 11 games, and haven't surrendered a loss in its last four. Over the past two seasons, Quinnipiac is 15-2-4 in games played after Sept. 24, and 14-2-4 against conference opposition.
Nine is Fine
Quinnipiac picked up its ninth win of the season at Rider (11/9) and moved into third place during the Division I era for most wins in a season. The nine wins are also good enough for fourth place all-time at Quinnipiac. The Bobcats can eclipse last year's season total with two straight wins to finish the campaign.
The Best in the MAAC
Quinnipiac leads the league in shutouts (10), goals against average (0.67) and goals allowed (13) this season. The Bobcats entered this week in a tie for eighth place in the nation in shutout percentage and are 13th in goals against average. Quinnipiac's backline consists of Stevenson Hawkey, Erik Panzer, Tobi Esche and Ashton Pett.
NSCAA/Continental Tire NCAA Division I Regional Poll
The Quinnipiac University men's soccer team was ranked fifth in the most recent NSCAA/Continental Tire NCAA Division I Men's Soccer North Atlantic Regional Poll.
You Can't lose If They Don't Score
The Bobcats' defense has posted clean sheets in 10 of its last 14 games - against the Holy Cross (9/14), Army (9/18), Yale (9/28), Iona (10/5), Niagara (10/12), Marist (10/16), Manhattan (10/23), Fairfield (10/30), Saint Peter's (11/2) and Rider (11/9).
Simon Hinde scored the game-winning goal in double overtime against Rider (11/9) to help Quinnipiac clinch a share of the regular season title. His nine goals this season have him just outside of 10th place all-time for most goals in a season at Quinnipiac, and have him ranked amongst the national and MAAC leaders. His five game-winning goals is tops in the conference as well.
Angoitia in the Record Books
Borja Angoitia continues to climb upwards in Quinnipiac's all-time record books. He currently finds himself within the top two all-time in three career statistical categories at QU. He is second in career shutouts (15), goals against average (1.14) and all-time in wins (23). His nine shutouts this year also has him in tied for first in most shutouts in a single-season.
Brandon Strain-Goode waited nearly four years to do it, but came through during the most opportune time for Quinnipiac. Strain-Goode scored his first career goal against Fairfield (10/30) – a goal that proved to be the difference in the decision. He ranks 16th all-time with 68 career appearances at Quinnipiac.
Pure Dead Brilliant
Scotland native Sam Nicol has two goals and four assists this season for the Bobcats. Nicol scored the game's first goal against Canisius (10/19) and then assisted on the game-winner that same day as well. He followed that performance with a goal at Manhattan (10/23) – which eventually proved to be the game-winner. Nicol has two career goals and six career assists.
Machel Baker's fourth goal of the season couldn't have come at a better time, as the junior forward lifted the Bobcats to a 2-1 victory over Siena (11/6) in double overtime. Baker had a goal and an assist against Providence (8/30); scored again against Boston College (9/2); then tallied an assist in the game against Lafayette (9/7); and then scored against Manhattan (10/23). Baker has six goals and four assists for his career.
Ogunjobi Into the Scoring Column
Ola Ogunjobi factored in Quinnipiac's 2-1 win at Siena (11/6), scoring the game-tying goal in the second half. He has seven goals and two assists for his career at Quinnipiac.
Tobi Esche scored his first career goal against Marist (10/16) to lift the Bobcats to their second MAAC win of season. James Doig whipped in a cross from the left corner where Esche darted to the near post to flick a header into the top right corner for the game's lone goal. Esche helped the offense again in the team's most recent outing, dishing out two assists in the win over Fairfield (10/30). He has four career points at Quinnipiac.
Doigy Being Doigy
James Doig has three assists for the Bobcats in his first year with the program. He picked up his third assist of the season against Canisius (10/19).
Prior to their game against Saint Peter's (11/2), Quinnipiac University Men's Soccer Head Coach Eric Da Costa and Director of Athletics and Recreation Jack McDonald took a minute to recognize the senior class members of the men's soccer program. This group has enjoyed a tremendous stint in a Bobcats' uniform, a run that included a regular-season title last year. Seniors Brandon Strain-Goode, Simon Hinde, Ola Ogunjobi, Jason Vancura and Sam Nicol make up the graduating class.