CENTER VALLEY, Pa. -- Army, Lafayette and Loyola Maryland remain as the Patriot League's sole unbeaten members after two weeks of play. The Black Knights rattled off another win on Saturday, beating Air Force 1-0 in Colorado Springs, Colo., to match their best start since 2007.
PATRIOT LEAGUE QUICK HITS
In addition to the Black Knights' best start in six seasons, Army's 1-0 victory Saturday was its first win at Air Force since 1975. American ranked No. 9 and Lafayette 10th in Tuesday's NSCAA/Continental Tire Mid-Atlantic poll. Two of the four midweek matches will air on the Patriot League Network - Boston University hosting Hofstra Wednesday at 7 p.m., and Lehigh welcoming Drexel Thursday at 7 p.m. Seventeen matches are scheduled over the next week, and a total of seven are set for the PLN. After being named BRINE Offensive Player of the Week last week, American freshman Dale Ludwig picked up another assist in the Eagles' 2-2 tie with Denver on Sunday. Bucknell has outshot its opponents 78-32 this season. Bison rookie defender Peter Krebs made his first career start Friday in Bucknell's 1-0 win over Buffalo. He played all 90 again Sunday in the win over La Salle. Navy's Derek Vogel, Joseph Greenspan and Alex Evans were named to the All-Tournament Team at the Hampton Inn BWI Classic last weekend. Lehigh has not allowed a goal in the last 199 minutes of play. Larry Ndjock's three-goal performance last week versus La Salle made him the first Greyhound to record a hat trick since 2010. It's the League's first since Navy's Joseph Greenspan netted three against Lafayette last season (9.22.12). Loyola's Jordan Watson only two saves came within seconds of each other as the freshman logged his first career win and shutout in Saturday's 1-0 victory over St. Francis (Pa.). Navy's match Sept. 24 at Virginia Tech will air on ESPN3.
Patriot League Notebook
WELCOME THE NEWCOMERS For the first time since 2001 there's a new face competing in the Patriot League, and this time around it's doubled. After a year of waiting, Boston University and Loyola Maryland made their League debuts Aug. 30, with the Greyhounds drawing 1-1 at Saint Joseph's, and the Terriers suffering a 2-1 overtime loss to Boston College. Before this season the League hadn't seen a new men's soccer member since 2001, when American joined in all sports. That year the Eagles brought the number of teams to an even eight. From 1995-2000 the League featured seven members.
IMMEDIATE CONTENDERS American was picked the preseason favorite of the head coaches and sports information directors, but League newcomers Boston University and Loyola Maryland look to be immediate contenders in the title race that begins in earnest when League play commences at the end of September. The Eagles claimed the pole position with 151 points and nine first-place votes, with the Terriers (130 points, three votes) and Greyhounds (121, four) in the rearview mirror. Defending champion Lafayette (115, three) took fourth in the poll, and 2011 champion Colgate (98, one) was fifth. Bucknell, Navy, Lehigh, Holy Cross and Army rounded out the preseason balloting.
BIGGER LEAGUE, BIGGER TOURNAMENT With the additions of Boston University and Loyola Maryland, the Patriot League announced it is expanding six of its tournaments and one of those is men's soccer. After 22 years of tournaments where the top four teams qualified, the 2013 field will involve six teams. The top two teams will earn quarterfinal byes, while seeds 3 through 6 will battle in the quarterfinals on Tuesday, Nov. 12. The tournament will re-seed for the semifinals on Friday, Nov. 15, and the last two remaining teams will vie for the League crown and automatic NCAA berth on Sunday, Nov. 17. The top overall seed will host the semifinals and championship.
DOOLEY, SEIGFREID UP FOR SENIOR CLASS HONOR A pair of Patriot Leaguers in Loyola's Stephen Dooley and American's Colin Seigfreid were named candidates for the Senior CLASS Award before the start of the season. Seigfreid is the League's reigning Scholar-Athlete of the Year in men's soccer, earned All-League honors a season ago and was a preseason All-League selection last month. Dooley, also a preseason All-League honoree, was an all-MAAC pick last year to go with his Scholar All-America honors from the NSCAA.
SOTO ON WATCH LIST American senior defender Cristobal Soto was named to the Missouri Athletic Club's (MAC) Hermann Trophy Watch List prior to the season. Soto, the preseason Defensive Player of the Year, was an All-League selection a year ago in helping the Eagles to the League title match for the fourth consecutive season. The Hermann Trophy honors the top male and female collegiate soccer players in the nation.
TOP TEAMS DOMINATE PRESEASON ALL-LEAGUE Nine of the 11 members on the preseason All-League squad are from the top four teams in the preseason poll. American and League newcomer Boston University tied with three selections apiece, while another newcomer, Loyola Maryland, had two student-athletes selected. Defending League titlist Lafayette, Bucknell and Navy rounded out the team with one selection each. The preseason All-League team and awards were voted on by the League's head coaches and sports information directors who couldn't cast a ballot for their own teams or student-athletes.
WATCH FREE ON THE PATRIOT LEAGUE NETWORK 2013-14 is the first of a multi-year agreement between the Patriot League and Campus Insiders who have teamed up to create the Patriot League Network, a streaming platform that will enable fans to watch League regular season and championship events for free. Currently more than 50 men's soccer matches are tentatively scheduled to stream on the Network, both League and non-League, including the Patriot League Tournament.
NCAA RECOGNIZES LEAGUE AGAIN The Patriot League was once again a big winner when the NCAA announced its latest set of Academic Performance Program Public Recognition Awards and Academic Progress Rate data in June. Four men's soccer teams were among the total of 71 League squads to earn NCAA Public Recognition Awards - Bucknell, Colgate, Holy Cross and Lafayette - for finishing in the top 10 percent of their sport in the most recent multi-year APR data. Meanwhile, six of the League's eight schools (pre-expansion) boasted an APR of 985 or better.
Patriot League Weekly Awards (9.2-9.8)
BRINE OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK LARRY NDJOCK, LOYOLA MARYLANDSo., F, Berlin, Germany The preseason Offensive Player of the Year backed up the accolade with a four-goal, eight-point week for the Greyhounds, leading his team to a pair of victories. Wednesday marked his first career hat trick with three goals on three shots in Loyola's 5-3 win at La Salle. His third goal against the Explorers was an unassisted tally at 51:57 that put the Greyhounds up 4-1 before La Salle rallied within 4-3. Ndjock returned to the pitch Saturday night and, despite facing a double team, scored the only goal his team would need in a 1-0 victory over visiting St. Francis (Pa.). He is tied with Bucknell's Chris Thorsheim for the League lead in goals (four) and points (eight).
BRINE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK MAYOWA ALLI, BUCKNELLSr., D, Lanham, Md. Alli was part of a Bucknell defense that yielded 17 total shots and just six on goal in three matches last week. The Bison dropped a 1-0 decision to visiting St. Francis (Pa.) on Wednesday despite allowing just three shots for the entire game. Bucknell rallied with two one-goal victories over the weekend, allowing eight shots to Buffalo in a 1-0 win and just six to a high-scoring La Salle team in Sunday's 2-1 victory. The Explorers had scored five times in their first two games leading up to Sunday's contest in Lewisburg, Pa.
BRINE GOALKEEPER OF THE WEEK WINSTON BOLDT, ARMYJr., GK, St. Louis, Mo. Just as he did last year, Boldt collects his second straight weekly honor to begin the season after posting back-to-back four-save shutouts of Manhattan (2-0) at home on Labor Day and at Air Force (1-0) on Saturday. The junior stopped three in the second half of the Black Knights' victory over the Jaspers, and made three more saves in the first 45 minutes of Saturday's win in Colorado Springs, Colo. Boldt's efforts have helped Army out to its best start since 2007 (4-0), while Saturday marked its first victory over the Falcons on the road since 1975.
BRINE ROOKIE OF THE WEEK ETHAN SPIVACK, ARMYFr., F, Miami, Fla. Spivack came off the bench for Army and netted the game's only goal in the 72nd minute when he booted a deflected through ball into the net to lift the Black Knights to a 1-0 victory at Air Force on Saturday. The rookie from Miami, Fla., logged two of his team's six attempts on goal in the contest before the Black Knights came away with their first road win over the Falcons since 1975. Spivack also saw time as a reserve in Army's 2-0 victory over Manhattan on Labor Day Monday.
HONORABLE MENTIONS CRISTOBAL SOTO, AMERICANSr., D, Santiago, Chile Converted his second penalty kick of the season in American's 2-2 draw with Denver on Sunday.
SEAN MOGAN, ARMYJr., D, Naperville, Ill. Played on a back line that pitched two shutouts, and tallied a goal and assist for three points in Army's 2-0 win over Manhattan last Monday.
CHRIS THORSHEIM, BUCKNELLSo., M, Manalapan, N.J. Tallied two goals on the week, including the lone goal in the Bison's 1-0 win over Buffalo on Friday and converted a second-half penalty kick that knotted Sunday's match with La Salle at 1-1 before Bucknell went on to win.
KEVIN MOTYLEWSKI, LEHIGHJr., GK, Mendham, N.J. Pressed into the starting role because of an injury to senior Ciaran Nugent, he picked up his first career shutout with four saves in Saturday's scoreless draw at Albany.
RYAN TUCK, LOYOLA MARYLANDFr., D, Stokesley, England Played every minute of two matches last week for the Greyhounds, and made a critical defensive save in Wednesday's win over La Salle. Was a critical contributor to Loyola's 1-0 win Saturday over St. Francis (Pa.).
THOMAS SHIIBA, NAVY So., F, Swarthmore, Pa. Scored the game-winner in overtime to lift Navy to a 2-1 win over Central Connecticut on Saturday. Netted the goal with just 11 seconds left in the first overtime.