No. 25 FGCU Looks to Extend Streaks Against Mercer on Friday
|Florida Gulf Coast||0||1||1||2|
|MER||36:56||Josh Shutter (Joey Heavner , Ryan Young)|
|FGCU||55:21||RAUDALES, Cristian (JONES, Deion )|
|FGCU||93:19||RAUDALES, Cristian (MORSE, William , PORTILLO, Josey)|
|Stats at a Glance||MER||FGCU|
|Shots (on Goal)||15 (5)||12 (5)|
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The No. 25 FGCU men’s soccer team returns to the FGCU Soccer Complex on Friday evening for its Atlantic Sun home opener against Mercer beginning at 7 p.m. The Eagles are riding an 11-game (10-0-1) A-Sun home unbeaten streak dating back to 2008 and hold a 10-game winning streak in league action.
The Green and Blue enter the contest with a 4-3-2 overall record, which includes a 1-0 mark in league play. In their most recent outing, the Eagles fell to No. 13 USF, 2-0, in front of a record setting crowd of 1,556 on Tuesday. It was the first time a pair of ranked opponents had faced one another at the FGCU Soccer Complex. Last Friday in the A-Sun opener, the Green and Blue left DeLand, Fla. with a 3-1 victory over in-state rival Stetson. After trailing 1-0 at the intermission, FGCU netted three unanswered second half goals en route to the win.
FGCU has appeared in a few of this week’s national polls. The Green and Blue retained their No. 25 ranking by Goal.com, while moving up to No. 38 in TopDrawerSoccer.com’s Tournament 48 rankings. Additionally, the Eagles received 22 votes (31st) in the NSCAA National Top 25, and were slotted No. 4 in the media outlet’s South Region rankings.
Leading the offensive attack for the Eagles, senior midfielder Josey Portillo (Metairie, La./Grace King HS) holds six points with a goal and a team-best four assists. Senior midfielders Francesco DiStefano (Kissimmee, Fla./Osceola HS) and Cristian Raudales (Bradenton, Fla./Manatee HS), as well as, junior midfield mate Andres Navas (Miami, Fla./Sunset Senior HS/FIU) each sit in a share of the team lead with two goals apiece.
Recently named one of 10 finalist for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, redshirt senior goalkeeper Adam Glick (Leola, Pa./Conestoga Valley HS) has played every minute (850) in goal and has posted a pair of shutouts this season. The Leola, Pa. product sits third in the A-Sun with a 1.16 goals against average, while fourth in save percentage at .766. The A-Sun preseason Defensive Player of the Year has also sent away 36 shots on goal to this point in the year.
Mercer comes into the match with a 5-4-1 overall record and 1-1 mark in the A-Sun. The Bears opened the conference slate with a 2-0 win over North Florida and followed with a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Jacksonville. Picked to finish fifth by the league coaches, Mercer is led offensively by junior midfielder Will Betts’ 10 points on four goals and two assists. Sophomore forward Ehjayson Henry holds a trio of goals, while three other players have netted a pair this season. With four shutouts, freshman goalkeeper Greg Ranjitsingh has played every game in net and has allowed 13 goals, for a goals against average of 1.27, and recorded 26 saves with a .667 save percentage.
FGCU leads the all-time series against Mercer, 3-1, holding a one-goal (7-6) advantage over the Bears. The Eagles are 2-1-1 in A-Sun home openers with an 8-3 lead in the goal column. When opening the A-Sun home schedule on a Friday, the Green and Blue have posted a pair of shutouts and outscored league opponents, 6-0.
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