Marquette Soccer Hosts Providence on Wednesday
Oct. 27, 2015
With three games remaining in the regular season, only three points separate the ninth-place Golden Eagles (4 points) with Providence (7 points) and DePaul (7 points), which are tied for fifth place in the BIG EAST standings. All three of MU's remaining games are against teams currently in position to make the conference tournament.
Marquette can even the all-time series against Providence with a win on Wednesday night as the Friars enter play with a 5-4-1 series lead dating back to their first-ever meeting in 2006. The two teams tied, 1-1, in their previous meeting last season before the Friars made their run to the Final Four.
The Golden Eagles are coming off a disappointing 1-0 overtime loss on the road to Xavier last Saturday, while the Friars played to a scoreless draw at home against DePaul.
Redshirt senior Kelmend Islami continues his breakout season after scoring a career-high sixth goal of the year against Creighton. He added four shots, including two on target in the overtime setback to Xavier and leads MU with 13 points this season.
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The Friars are 1-2-2 in overtime games this season following Saturday's draw to DePaul. Providence held the convincing edge in shots, 24-12, led by Mac Steeves' 12, including five shots on net. The Friars finished with 11 shots on goal and a 12-3 advantage in corner kicks.
PC has outscored opponents this season, 18-12, with Mac Steeves' leading the way offensively, ranking second in the BIG EAST with 22 points on 10 goals and two assists. He led the team with 12 shots in the tie against DePaul. The next closest point scorer for the Friars is Julian Gressel with nine points on two goals and five assists.
In net, Ben Seguljic recorded his fifth shutout of the season against DePaul. He has allowed just 12 goals in all 13 starts for the Friars, registering 33 saves, a 0.88 GAA and a .733 save percentage.
After Wednesday's game against MU, the Friars will close out the regular season with home games against No. 1 Creighton and St. John's.
The match was treated as a must-win for the Golden Eagles going into play and they created their fair share of scoring chances with Kelmend Islami leading the way with four shots, including two on target. MU would trail in the shots category, 12-10, but lead in shots on goal, 6-3, and corner kicks, 9-6.
The loss dropped MU to 0-3-2 in overtime games this season.
The two teams have met in each of the past nine seasons and the Golden Eagles are unbeaten in the previous five match-ups, going 4-0-1 over that span, after the Friars had won each of the first five meetings in the series.
Last time both teams met was Oct. 22, 2014 in a rematch of the 2013 BIG EAST Men's Soccer Championship. Unlike that title game that saw the Golden Eagles claim a 3-2 victory, both teams would play to a 1-1 draw. Julian Gressel put the Friars on the board first with a goal in the 42nd minute, but Jake Taylor tied it in the 63rd minute to earn MU a point.
Marquette's remaining opponents (Providence, Butler, DePaul) all sit ahead of them in the standings and provide opportunities (with victories) to climb up the leaderboard and into a tournament spot before all is said and done on the final day of the regular season (Nov. 5).
Those to be honored include: C. Nortey, Kelmend Islami, David Selvaggi, Adam Hermsen, Patrick Schulz and Brady Walsh.
Currently, Creighton leads the way with a No. 1 ranking in every major poll, including NSCAA and College Soccer News, while Georgetown is No. 7 in the NSCAA poll and Butler and is receiving votes.
Islami's penalty kick goal in the win over Dayton (Sept. 7) was his third goal of the season, equaling one more than he had in any of his previous three seasons with Marquette. He added his fourth against NIU (Sept. 18).
He also accounted for the game winner at Wisconsin (Oct. 7).
Marquette was one of 217 institutions across all divisions to have both their men's and women's teams recognized for this award - the seventh straight time MU has accomplished that feat.
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