MT. PLEASANT, S.C. – The College of Charleston men’s soccer team looks to clinch the Southern Conference regular-season championship with a win over Georgia Southern at Patriots Point on Saturday night. The Cougars and Eagles kick off at 7 p.m. in CofC’s penultimate match of the regular season.
Head coach Ralph Lundy:
“We know they’re going to challenge us. Georgia Southern just went to Wofford which is a tough, tough place to go and win and they did it, one to nothing. One of my old assistant coaches is there as an assistant coach now; we know he’ll have them motivated. This is a great week for the team. We’ve been training hard and extremely focused. We’re looking forward to Saturday’s match.”
Senior midfielder Ralphie Lundy:
“They’re going to be a tough team. They’re going to come out extremely hard and physical and try to be in our face and really disrupt our game. But as long as we stick to the way we play and knock the ball around with quick movement, quality passing, getting to goal… I think we’ll be fine. As long as we defend very strong, like we have been, then I think we won’t have too many problems.”
KICKING OFF THE COUGARS…
The Cougars (8-8-0, 4-1-0 SoCon) are seeking to claim the SoCon regular-season crown, extend their win streak to three matches and remain unbeaten at home in league play.
Last Saturday, the Cougars opened a three-match, season-concluding home stand and cruised past Davidson in their most complete effort of the season. For the second time this season, senior midfielder Sean de Silva (Port of Spain, Trinidad) was good for five points with a pair of goals and an assist. Ralphie Lundy (Mt. Pleasant, S.C.), Connor Coons (Alpharetta, Ga.) and Luke Huggett (Brighton, England) also scored for the Cougars.
CofC (8-8-0, 4-1-0 SoCon) outshot the Wildcats, 14-12, and matched their season high with nine shots on target. CofC was forced to fend off 11 corner kicks but was up to the task each time, and Cougar keeper Kees Heemskerk (Zaandam, Netherlands) made four saves on the night to preserve the shutout.
Saturday’s output, combined with an assist in CofC’s 3-2 win over Elon on Tuesday, Oct. 16, earned de Silva the most recent SoCon player of the week honor. He now has 13 points in CofC’s last five contests and is tied for fourth in the league with 19 points off seven goals and five assists.
The Cougars are now winners of five of their last six and haven’t lost to an unranked opponent since Friday, Sept. 14.
CofC now has 13 players to notch a goal and/or assist this season and six multiple-goal scorers.
CofC has excelled from the comforts of home, boasting a 5-2 record at Patriots Point this season with the only losses coming to No. 1 Maryland and No. 2 North Carolina. The Cougars have already guaranteed themselves a hosting-seed in the opening round of the SoCon Tournament which will be played on Saturday, Nov. 3.
SCOUTING THE EAGLES…
Saturday is the final match of the regular season for the Eagles and they will be fighting for the fourth-and-final hosting seed for the opening round of the tournament. GSU currently sits in fifth place and could jump into the No. 4 seed with a win over the Cougars and a UNCG loss to Elon on Saturday night. That scenario could be undone; however, if Wofford were to win its two remaining SoCon games and sneak from the sixth seed into the top four.
The Eagles just had a two-match win streak snapped when they fell to Furman in their home finale. GSU got on the board in the 30th minute to knot the game at one, but would allow a pair of corner-kick conversions which would concede the result.
Prior to that, the Eagles went to Wofford and came away with a 1-0 lead in the match Ralph Lundy alluded to. Joe Hughes scored his team-high fourth goal of the season for the lone mark of the match in the 67th minute.
GSU’s previous two-match win streak came on the heels of a 10-match winless streak which spanned from Sept. 8 – Oct. 9. The Eagles were 0-9-1 over that stretch.
Hughes paces a convocation of eagles behind him with three goals on the year. Reed Norton, Drew Ruggles, Witt Carlisle and Hunter Norton are all three-goal scorers this season. Norton and Ruggles are both good for three assists as well.
MULTIMEDIA AVAILABLE FOR THE MATCH…
Fans unable to make it to Patriots Point for live and in-person soccer action will be able keep up with the plays on their computers and mobile devices. CofCSports.com will provide both a live webstream and live stats with animated play-by-play.
The webstream requires a subscription but offers a multiple-camera broadcast with play-by-play commentary and analysis. The live stats are available at no charge.
FOLLOW THE COUGARS…
Another great way of keeping up with the CofC men’s soccer team is through the team’s own Twitter account (@CofCSoccer). The account provides pictures, team activities, statuses when the team is on the road as well as in-game thoughts and updates.
The Cougars conclude the regular season with a midweek home match against Wofford on Tuesday, Oct. 30 at 7 p.m.