Men's Soccer Heads North for USF Tournament
|Florida Gulf Coast||0||1||1|
|UCI||25:30||Santana, Christopher (Cardenas, Enrique )|
|UCI||26:36||Ibarra, Miguel (Cardenas, Enrique , Santana, Christopher)|
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||UCI|
|Shots (on Goal)||12 (5)||9 (6)|
|Florida Gulf Coast||0||1||1|
|FGCU||79:51||DiSTEFANO, Francesco (MORSE, William , PORTILLO, Josey)|
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||SLU|
|Shots (on Goal)||13 (2)||8 (6)|
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU men’s soccer team will look to continue its winning ways as it heads to Tampa, Fla. to compete in a pair of contests at the USF Tournament. The Eagles will open with a Friday evening contest against No. 5 UC Irvine at 5 p.m. and follow with a Sunday afternoon meeting with Saint Louis beginning at 2 p.m.
The Eagles (1-1-2) picked up their first win of the season last week, scoring four second half goals in a 4-0 rout of Rhode Island at the FGCU Soccer Complex. Seniors Francesco DiStefano (Kissimmee, Fla./Osceola HS), Josey Portillo (Metairie, La./Grace King HS), Scott Harrison (Cocoa, Fla./Merritt Island HS) and freshman Xavier Silva (Boca Raton, Fla./North Broward Prep) each found the back of the net for the Green and Blue. Redshirt senior goalkeeper Adam Glick (Leola, Pa./Conestoga Valley HS) sent away a pair of shots on goal to collect his first victory in net.
Earning Atlantic Sun Conference Player of the Week and Defensive Player of the Week respectively, Portillo and Glick have been strong for the Eagles this season. A preseason All-American and All-Conference selection, Portillo finished with three points against URI, assisting what proved to be the decisive tally before heading a free kick cross to the back of the net. The midfielder leads the Green and Blue with four points this season with one goal and two assists. Portillo’s A-Sun weekly honor was the first of his career.
The reigning A-Sun Defensive Player of the Year and unanimous preseason All-Conference selection, Glick picked up the 27th win and 17th shutout of his career, and now ranks fourth all-time in A-Sun history in shutouts, just six away from Jeff Cassar of FIU (1992-95). The netminder has totaled 13 saves through the opening four contests and played every minute in goal. The A-Sun weekly award was the sixth of Glick’s career.
No. 5 UC Irvine (6-0-0) enters the tournament with an unblemished record, defeating San Diego (1-0), Nebraska-Omaha (4-0), Gonzaga (2-1), Drake (2-1), Wisconsin (3-2) and Illinois-Chicago (4-2). The Anteaters were crowned the 2010 Big West regular season champions and were picked to finish fourth in the league this season. UCI has outscored its opposition 16-6 this season and are led by a pair of five-goal scorers in senior Christian Hernandez and sophomore Enrique Cardenas. Hernandez is a three-time Big West Player of the Week, while Cardenas was recently named to College Soccer News’ National team of the Week. With a pair of shutouts, senior keeper Andrew Fontein has started every game this season, recording 14 saves while allowing six goals. Fontein was selected as the Big West Defensive Player of the Week to open the season.
The Friday evening contest will feature a pair of goalies in Glick and Fontein who are candidates for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award. Both keepers are their respective program leaders in career shutouts and victories while also the single-season record holders for shutouts, goals against average and wins. The award is issued to a senior student-athlete that demonstrates notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition.
Saint Louis (1-3-0) will enter its Friday contest with host USF coming off a 4-0 home loss to No. 4 Akron. The Billikens lone victory came at the adidas/IU Credit Union Classic where they defeated No. 10 Notre Dame, 2-1, in a double-overtime contest. Freshman midfielder Raymond Lee leads SLU with five points on a pair of goals and one assist, while senior Alex Johnston and sophomore Adnan Gabeljic each hold a goal apiece. Goalkeepers Nick Shackelford (1-0) and Mark Pais (0-3) have split time in net, allowing a combined 10 goals against with five and 18 saves, respectively.
It will be just the second time FGCU has competed against a Big West foe, after defeating UC Riverside, 3-0, at the UNLV Rebel Classic in Las Vegas, Nev. during the 2009 season to move to 1-0 against the league. Although it’s the first meeting between the Eagles and Billikens, it will mark the second time in a 10-day span that the Green and Blue have taken on an Atlantic 10 opponent, improving to 1-0 versus the conference with the URI victory.
The Green and Blue will not compete with No. 16 USF at the weekend event. The teams will meet later in the season when the Bulls travel to Fort Myers on Tuesday, October 4 at 7 p.m.
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