ELON, N.C. – After over a week away from competition, the Elon University men’s soccer team returns to the soccer pitch as the Phoenix takes on William & Mary on Wednesday, Oct. 11, in Williamsburg, Va. Kickoff from Martin Family Stadium at Albert-Daly Field is set for 7 p.m.
Fans can follow the Phoenix throughout the match on Twitter at the program’s handle @ElonMensSoccer. Other scores and updates will also be provided at the handle @elonscores. The match will be streamed online via Tribe Athletics TV on tribeathletics.com.
Elon and William & Mary will meet for the ninth time on the soccer pitch on Wednesday and for the fifth time in Williamsburg, Va., in the series. The Tribe holds a 5-2-1 ledger all-time over the Phoenix in the brief series with William & Mary eliminating the maroon and gold last season from the Colonial Athletic Association tournament in Elon by a score of 1-0. Overall, Elon is 1-2-1 in matches at William & Mary with its lone victory coming in 2012.
Last Time Out
Elon battled to try to erase an early 1-0 deficit, but could not find the equalizer as the Phoenix fell at No. 19 Duke in a matchup between intrastate rivals last Tuesday, Oct. 3. The Blue Devils took the lead in the 13th minute on a Daniele Proch goal. Proch was able to finish by the near post sending a low shot past the keeper.
Elon had a couple of solid chances to provide the equalizer after that. After a Duke foul set up a Phoenix free kick near the 21st minute, the set piece found the foot of Elijah Agu in the box, but the senior pushed the ball high over the goal.
With the clock ticking down under a minute in the match, Elon was able to get one final look for the tying goal. Keeper Matthew Jegier sent a great cross to Billy Beresford, who beat the defense inside the box on the right side of the goal with 20 seconds remaining. The Sheffield, England, native fired a look that was jumped on by the Duke netmider, ending the final chance for the Phoenix and setting the final score of 1-0.
Elon Garners Team Academic Award for 10th Straight Year
On Thursday, Oct. 5, the Phoenix was rewarded with a Team Academic Award for the 10th straight season from the United Soccer Coaches (formerly the NSCAA). Elon was honored after posting a team cumulative grade-point average of 3.30 during the 2016-17 academic school year. The maroon and gold was one of five teams in the CAA recognized and among 282 men’s soccer programs in the country that earned the accolade.
About Elon (3-2-6, 0-1-3 CAA)
After opening the season with a 3-0-1 ledger after a 3-0 victory versus Triad rival High Point at home on Sept. 8, Elon has been winless in its seven most recent outings, including a 1-0 setback at Duke last Tuesday, Oct. 3. Heading into Wednesday’s match, the Phoenix is the only team in the league to has yet win a match during CAA play with its 0-1-3 mark.
Elon’s offense was very active during the first four games, averaging 1.50 goals per match with 15 shots on goal at nearly 40 percent. In the seven matches since however, the Phoenix has only tallied three goals (0.43 per match), while averaging 9.7 shots per game. Elon has also been shutout in four of those seven matches and last scored a goal at No. 15/14 UNCW.
The Phoenix’s defense has continued to be one of the more stellar units both in the CAA and in the country. Elon has only conceded five goals this season and has held opponents to one goal or fewer in 18 of its past 20 matches dating back to last season.
Scouting William & Mary (5-4-3, 1-2-2 CAA)
Heading into Wednesday’s match, William & Mary is 5-4-3 on the year and 1-2-2 in the CAA after earning a 4-1 victory at Northeastern on Saturday, Oct. 7, snapping a three-match winless streak. The Tribe were selected as the league favorite in the 2017 CAA Preseason poll after coming off a 12-7-2 overall ledger and a 3-3-2 league mark in 2016.
The Tribe leads the league in shots per match (12.67), points (59) and assists (21) and is second in goals with 19. League 2017 Preseason Player of the Year Antonio Bustamante leads William & Mary with 14 points on his team-high five goals and four assists. William Eskay and Ryder Bell are also tied with Bustamante with four assists while Reeves Trott has four goals.
William & Mary’s defense has conceded 15 goals this season with the opposition averaging 8.8 shots per match. The Tribe has allowed 47 shots on goal this season at an average of .443 percent. Phil Breno has started every game in goal for William & Mary and has a goals-against average of 1.19 with 31 saves and four clean sheets.
The Phoenix kicks off a three-game home stand with a visit from league foe Northeastern on Saturday, Oct. 14. That match is scheduled for a 7 p.m. kickoff from Rudd Field.