FORT MYERS, Fla. – In a battle of the top two teams in the Atlantic Sun standings, the No. 21 FGCU men’s soccer team will look to clinch a share of its first-ever conference championship as it plays host to Stetson on Friday evening at the FGCU Soccer Complex. The match is scheduled for a 7 p.m. kickoff and will be part of the A-Sun’s efforts to assist the Coaches vs. Cancer Foundation.
In association with National Cancer Awareness Month, the Atlantic Sun Conference men’s soccer programs have partnered with the Coaches vs. Cancer Foundation. In the five A-Sun men’s soccer contests played on Thursday and Friday, all players competing will be wearing pink armbands and tape, while the coaches will be showing support by wearing pink polo shirts on the sidelines. Dick’s Sporting Goods has joined with the A-Sun players and coaches to sponsor the event, and fans are encouraged to make donations to the American Cancer Foundation before and during the game.
Riding an eight-game (7-0-1) A-Sun home unbeaten streak, the Blue and Green bring their 10-3-2 (6-0 A-Sun) record into the Friday night showdown with the Hatters. The Eagles currently sit atop the A-Sun standings with 18 points, while Stetson sits three points back with a total of 15.
The Eagles have outscored their opposition, 24-11, through their first 15 contests. Leading the offensive charge, sophomore Deion Jones (Tampa, Fla./Freedom HS) has 13 points with a team-high five goals and three assists. Freshman Ryan Price (Melbourne Beach, Fla./Melbourne HS) has four goals on the year, while juniors Cristian Raudales (Brandenton, Fla./Manatee HS) and Josey Portillo (Metairie, La./Grace King HS) each hold three.
Redshirt junior keeper Adam Glick (Leola, Pa./Conestoga Valley HS) has started all 15 contests and racked up every minute (1411:46) in goal this season, while sending away a total of 58 shots on goal. Glick leads the A-Sun conference in save percentage (.841), saves and shutouts (6), while sitting second in goals against average (0.70).
Rebounding from its first conference loss to Mercer (Oct. 14), Stetson (8-3-1, 5-1-0) scored three goals in the first half and held on for a 3-1 road win over Campbell last Saturday. The Hatters have outscored their opponents 30-8 this season and lead the A-Sun in goals per game (2.5). Fredrik Brustad’s 18 points on six goals and six assists leads the team and ranks second in the conference, while the three goals and 10 assists from Jonathan Mendoza are close behind with 16 points. Meanwhile, Kai Eckenrode and Ryan Asare-Bediako each hold five goals on the year. Goalkeeper Andreas Schnabl sits just behind Glick in save percentage (.814) and shutouts (4), and leads the conference in goals against average (0.65).
The Eagles will look to revenge last season’s loss to the Stetson in DeLand, Fla. In a battle for second place in the final A-Sun regular season standings, the Hatters defeated the Eagles 2-1. FGCU is 0-3 all-time against Stetson.
Shortly before kickoff with FAU on Tuesday, FGCU moved up three spots to No. 21 in this week’s Soccer America Top 25 poll. The Blue and Green’s national ranking by Soccer America marks the third straight week they’ve cracked the top 25. In addition to the national ranking from Soccer America, FGCU received 22 votes in the NSCAA Top 25 poll to sit in 29th overall.
The FGCU Athletics Department will be hosting a Mad Hatter competition at the event. Fans are encouraged to wear their craziest hats to be a part of the competition. It will also RHA night and $1 hot dog night at the FGCU Soccer Complex. Any student with a valid student ID will receive the discount.
Tickets for all home events can be purchased through the FGCU Ticket Office in Alico Arena either in person or by phone at (239) 590-7145. Tickets are also available at www.FGCUathletics.com/tickets.
Live stats, box scores and recaps for every FGCU contest are available at www.FGCUAthletics.com. Live updates of FGCU’s games can also be followed on www.twitter.com/FGCUEagles.