ELON, N.C. – The Elon University men’s soccer team, looking to shake a three-match losing skid, hosts UNCW in the Phoenix’s regular season finale on Tuesday, Nov. 1, at Rudd Field. The match is set to kickoff at 7 p.m.
Fans can follow the Phoenix on Tuesday with updates on Twitter from the program’s handle @ElonMensSoccer. Other score updates will also be provided at the handle @elonscores as well as live stats from the men’s soccer home page. The match will also be streamed through Elon’s Phoenix All-Access channel.
Elon will meet UNCW for the ninth time on Tuesday overall and the third time as league foes. In a series dating back to 2001, the Phoenix holds a 5-2-1 advantage all-time over the Seahawks and has a current three-game win streak against UNCW. Last season, the maroon and gold earned a 2-1 victory in Wilmington, N.C., against the 24th ranked Seahawks.
Both teams were originally scheduled to face each other earlier in the season on Sept. 28, in the Phoenix’s Colonial Athletic Association home opener. Inclement weather however forced the postponement of that match between the two programs until the rescheduled date of Nov. 1.
The Phoenix was handed its third straight defeat last Saturday, Oct. 29, as the maroon and gold suffered a 3-1 setback to CAA-leader Hofstra at Rudd Field. The Pride broke a scoreless battle with a goal late in the opening half before Elon’s Amir Berkane answered with the equalizer around the 68th minute. Hofstra however responded with two unanswered goals to take its third straight over the Phoenix, 3-1.
Despite its setback to Hofstra on Saturday, Elon clinched a spot for the upcoming CAA Tournament for the third season in a row and will either be the No. 3 or No. 4 seed for the league championships pending its result versus UNCW. Hofstra will host the league championships for the second straight season and has a first-round bye along with No. 2 seed Delaware.
Hofstra, Delaware, Elon and William & Mary are the only teams to have clinched a spot for the CAA Tournament. UNCW, James Madison and College of Charleston are competing for the final two spots for the league playoffs.
For the ninth straight season, Elon was awarded as a National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Academic Team as announced on Oct 6. The Phoenix produced a team GPA of 3.0 or higher for the ninth year in a row and was one of 315 men’s soccer teams that were honored by the NSCAA. Elon was also one of six teams from the Colonial Athletic Association that were recognized.
Jegier Selected CoSIDA Academic All-District
Matthew Jegier was named an Academic All-District selection by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) last Thursday, Oct. 27. The redshirt sophomore keeper was selected to the first team for District 3 and has a chance to be named Academic All-American later this season.
About Elon (7-5-3, 3-2-2 CAA)
Elon’s three-match losing streak is the longest for the program since the 2011 season. Each of the Phoenix’s setbacks have also come at the home confines of Rudd Field as Elon has posted the most losses on its home pitch since 2012 (three).
The Phoenix’s offense has been slowed a bit during its three-match losing streak including only one goal over the past two matches. Elon’s Elijah Agu is tied for the CAA-lead in goals with 11, but has been held without a goal in the past two games. The striker from Cary, N.C., also paces the CAA with 0.73 goals per game and is second in the league in points per match at 1.53.
Elon’s defense has conceded 14 goals on the year with half of that total coming in the last three games. Despite that, the Phoenix is still leading the league in fewest goals allowed, goals against average (0.88) and is tied for the CAA-lead with seven shutouts. Phoenix opponents are being held to just under 11 shots per match with 35 percent of those being put on frame.
About UNCW (8-5-2, 3-2-2 CAA)
The Seahawks snapped a three-match losing streak of its own on with a 1-0 victory over Delaware on Saturday to move into a four-way tie for third in the CAA standings with 11 points along with Elon, William & Mary and James Madison. Prior to its three-match losing streak, UNCW had either been ranked or receiving votes in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Top-25 poll.
On the year, UNCW has scored 21 goals on the year with Julio Moncada and Stian Sandbekkhaug accounting for 14 of that total. Moncada leads the Seahawks in total points with his team-high eight goals and three assists while Sandbekkhaug has posted six goals. Three other players have tailed a pair of goals for UNCW.
The Seahawks have allowed the second-fewest goals in the CAA with 16 and is also second to Elon in GAA at 1.04. Netminder Ryan Cretens has played every minute between the posts and has five shutouts and a 68 percent save percentage.
Regardless of its outcome on Tuesday versus UNCW, Elon will host a match for the quarterfinal round of the CAA Tournament this Saturday, Nov. 5, at 7 p.m. at Rudd Field. The opponent for that match will be determined after the conclusion of Tuesday’s contests and announced later in the week.