Men’s soccer hopes to shake their two losses
Published: Friday, September 20, 2013
Updated: Friday, September 20, 2013 01:09
For the first time since 2008, the UConn men’s soccer team (2-2-1) has dropped consecutive games after losses to Bradley and Syracuse this past week. As a result, the Huskies have dropped nine spots in the latest NSCAA polls as they currently stand at No. 12. Their attempt to snap the skid, however, will not be easy, as they host No. 10 Saint Louis (4-1-0) Saturday at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium.
This marks the first time since 2009 that UConn will face a higher-ranked team coming into the match. The Huskies last took down the then-No. 18 St. John’s when they were unranked in September of 2009 and followed up with a defeat over the then-ranked No. 6 Harvard a month later when UConn was No. 17.
The Huskies’ offense has gotten off to a slow start. Despite taking 68 shots so far this season, the team has managed to only find the net twice, with the last goal coming 339 minutes ago when junior transfer Edir DaGraca scored in a 1-0 win over Boston University on Sept. 6.
Defensively, UConn has fared well thus far. The team has given up only two goals all season but they would prove to be the game-winners in the individual losses. While junior goalkeeper Andre Blake’s .667 save percentage may seem questionable to some, the cause for that could be attributed to him only needing to make four saves as the team’s defense as a whole have done a good job at keeping the ball away from the goal.
The visiting Billikens, on the other hand, have had a more cohesive effort from the team thus far. Ranked as high as No. 6 at one point by the NSCAA, the team’s only hiccup on the season was its loss at Evansville on Sept. 11. Apart from that, the Billikens have nine players who have registered points and seven who have scored goals. The team is also averaging two goals per match while senior goalkeeper Nick Shackelford has allowed only three goals with 18 saves and a .857 save percentage.
Kickoff is scheduled at 7 p.m.