Sept. 28, 2009
Center Valley, Pa.--Four teams started the Patriot League season with victories on Saturday. Those that did not, however, need not fret. The last Patriot League champion to open Patriot League play with a win was Bucknell in 2006. American, Lafayette, Lehigh and Navy, all of which won on Saturday, hope to buck that recent trend.
Patriot League Men's Soccer Release 9.28.09
BRINE Offensive Player of the Week
Mike Worden, American Jr., F, Silver Spring, Md.
Worden scored the game-winning goal in each of American's victories last week. He scored the lone goal in the Eagles' 1-0 triumph at Virginia Tech. He then scored the deciding goal in American's Patriot League opener at Bucknell.
BRINE Defensive Player of the Week
Adam Welch, Lehigh Sr., D, Bethlehem, Pa.
Welch recorded a goal and an assist while also helping the Lehigh defense stifle a pair of high-profile opponents. He scored his first goal of the season with three minutes left in regulation against Penn State, sending the game in to overtime. He added an assist in the Mountain Hawks' 2-1 win over defending Patriot League champion Colgate. It is the second straight week that Welch has received the honor.
BRINE Goalkeeper of the Week
Philip Nelson, Lafayette Sr., GK, Attleboro, Mass.
Nelson registered his fifth shutout of the season, a 1-0 double-overtime victory at Holy Cross on Saturday. He played every minute and made four saves during the contest. He now has 13 career shutouts, ranking him seventh all-time at Lafayette.
BRINE Rookie of the Week
Austin Decker, Lehigh Fr., F, Iowa City, Iowa
Decker was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week for the second consecutive time after scoring a goal in the Mountain Hawks' 2-1 win over defending Patriot League champion Colgate on Saturday. He now has a team-best four goals and eight points.
Performances Last Week
Ryan Leonard, American
Sr., GK, Braintree, Mass.
Picked up his first career shutout and his second career win in American's 1-0 win at Virginia Tech. Made three saves against the Hokies.
B.J. Glenn, Lafayette
Jr., F, Philadelphia, Pa.
Scored the lone goal in Lafayette's Patriot League opener, a 1-0 win at Holy Cross. Goal came with 44 seconds left in the second overtime period.
Jonathan Nydell, Lehigh
Jr., GK, Washington, D.C.
Tied a season high with nine saves in Lehigh's 1-1 tie at Penn State. Added four saves in the Mountain Hawks' 2-1 win over defending Patriot League champion Colgate.
Patriot League Notebook
The Week In Review
American, Lafayette, Lehigh and Navy all picked up victories during the first weekend of Patriot League play. American scored a resounding 3-1 win at Bucknell. Also winning on the road was Lafayette. The Leopards got a goal from junior forward B.J. Glenn with 44 seconds left in the second overtime period to escape Worcester with a win. Navy recorded a 1-0 triumph over archrival Army. Lehigh topped defending champion Colgate, 2-1, in overtime. In non-League action, American snapped a three-game losing streak with a 1-0 win at Virginia Tech, while Bucknell registered a 1-0 win over St. Francis (Pa.). Lehigh played to a 1-1 draw against Penn State. Holy Cross dropped a 2-0 decision at Boston University. Navy fell to LaSalle, 4-0.
Patriot League play will continue on Saturday. Rivals Lehigh and Lafayette will meet at 7 p.m. in Easton, Pa. At the same time, Holy Cross will welcome Colgate to Worcester, Mass. At 8 p.m., Navy will host Bucknell. On Sunday, Army will travel south to Washington, D.C. to battle American. Each team will also play one non-League game this week.
Week One Doesn't Always Tell The Story
While winning a team's Patriot League opener is important, it does not always predict late-season success. Three of the past four League champions have not won their League opener. The last Patriot League champion to open League play with a win was Bucknell in 2006. The Bison topped Holy Cross, 2-0, in Worcester.
Young Mids Making Their Move
Navy has already surpassed its totals for wins and goals from a year ago. Just eight games into the 2009 campaign, Navy has scored 12 goals, one more than the Mids produced last season. Of those 12 goals, six have been produced by freshmen. Of Navy's five game-winning goals, four have come from freshmen. The Mids' Saturday win over Army snapped a 15-game Patriot League winless streak and an 11-game Patriot League home winless streak.
Freshmen Finding Their Way
Half of the Patriot League's eight teams are led in scoring by freshmen. Colgate (Mike Reidy)Lafayette (Sean Peckham), Lehigh (Austin Decker) and Navy (Michael Rakoczy) all find first-year players at the top of their statistical charts thus far. Reidy, Peckham and Decker each have eight points, while Rakoczy has seven. Reidy and Decker lead all freshmen with four goals apiece.
Eagles Earning Their Stripes On The Road
American is one of just two Patriot League teams without a home victory. However, the Eagles are 4-1 in games away from the friendly confines of the Reeves Athletic Complex. American snapped its three-game losing streak with wins at Virginia Tech and Bucknell.
Colgate Picked To Win Patriot League Championship
Colgate was chosen as the favorite to win the 2009 Patriot League Men's Soccer championship in a preseason vote by head coaches and sports information directors. The winners of the past two Patriot League championships, the Raiders received 12 first-place votes and 95 overall points. Coaches and sports information directors could not vote for their own teams. American received the other four first place votes and 86 points overall, leaving them in the second position in the poll. Lafayette was picked third with 60 points, followed closely by Holy Cross (58), Bucknell (57) and Lehigh (49). Navy was selected seventh with 26 points, while Army was tabbed eighth with 17.
2009 Patriot League Tournament
The 2009 Patriot League Tournament will take place Friday and Sunday, November 13 and 15 at the site of the highest seed. The top four teams as determined by the regular-season standings will participate in the Patriot League tourney.
The Eagles put an end to their three-game losing streak with road wins against Virginia Tech and Bucknell. Mike Worden had the game-winning goal in each contest. The Eagles' defensive unit allowed just one goal in two games. American limited Virginia Tech to just three shots on goal. The Eagles will play at James Madison on Wednesday before resuming Patriot Laegue play against Army.
The Black Knights dropped their third straight 1-0 loss, giving Army seven straight losses. The Black Knights are searching for their first goal since scoring twice in a season-opening 2-1 win against NJIT. Nick Alexander leads the Patriot League with 40 saves. Army will play at Rider on Wednesday before traveling to Washington, D.C. for a duel with American.
The Bison lost their Patriot League opener for the first time since a 1-0 overtime loss at Holy Cross in 2002.It was only the third time that Bucknell had allowed more than one goal in a game this season. The Bison will attempt to get back on the winning track with a non-League game against Binghamton on Wednesday. Bucknell will then travel to Navy for a Patriot League showdown on Saturday.
The Raiders were dealt a 2-1 overtime loss at Lehigh on Saturday. Colgate surrendered an own-goal in the extra period for the deciding score. The two-time defending Patriot League champions have not won a League-opener since 2006. Freshman Mike Reidy, who scored the team's lone goal against Lehigh, leads the team with eight points. Colgate will resume Patriot League play at Holy Cross.
The Crusaders dropped a pair of games last week, falling to Boston University and Lafayette. Holy Cross has now lost three straight games. Thomas Booth ranks fourth in the Patriot League in saves and fourth on his team in scoring. The Crusaders will host Albany on Tuesday before hosting Colgate on Saturday.
Junior forward B.J. Glenn, who has missed three games and started just two due to injury, scored with 44 seconds left in the second overtime to propel Lafayette to a 1-0 win over Holy Cross. Philip Nelson recorded his League-best fifth shutout. The Leopards will host Villanova on Wednesday before taking on rival Lehigh on Saturday.
Lehigh became the first Patriot League team to beat Colgate since Holy Cross beat the Raiders on Sept. 27, 2008. Austin Decker scored his team-leading fourth goal. The Mountain Hawks won in overtime on a Colgate own-goal. Lehigh will play at Fairleigh Dickinson on Tuesday before meeting rival Lafayette on Saturday.
The Mids surpassed their win total from a year ago with a 1-0 triumph over rival Army. Navy defeated the Black Knights for the first time since 2005. Wes Powell's game-winning penalty kick goal was Navy's first successful penalty kick since 1997. The Mids will play at George Washington on Wednesday before hosting Bucknell Saturday.