PISCATAWAY, N.J. (October 4, 2013) – The Rutgers men’s soccer team is looking to bounce back after Wednesday’s loss to Hofstra when they host Cincinnati in American Athletic Conference (AAC) action on Saturday night at 7 p.m.
* First 100 people in attendance can pick a free Rutgers water bottle.
* Rutgers closes out a two-game homestand on Saturday. The Scarlet Knights are currently 4-5-1 overall and 1-1-0 in AAC action.
* Several former Scarlet Knights will be in attendance as RU takes on the Bearcats as men’s soccer celebrates 75 years. Among those in attendance will be a member of the very first soccer team from 1938.
* Freshman midfielder Erik Sa was named the AAC Offensive Player of the Week on Monday. Sa lifted RU to a 1-0 victory last Saturday night against Memphis with his first collegiate goal, netting the game-winner in the 72nd minute of play off one of three Scarlet Knight corner kicks on the evening.
* Sa’s tally ended a 274 minute scoring drought and two-game skid for the Scarlet Knights. The victory also gave Rutgers its first victory away from the friendly confines of Yurcak Field this season.
* Rookie goalkeeper David Greczek was named to the AAC Honor Roll. He made three saves against Memphis in capturing his second career shutout..
The series between the Scarlet Knights and Bearcats is all tied up at 4-4-1. The two teams has gone back and forth between the win and loss columns the last five seasons with Cincinnati edging RU in its last meeting, 1-0.
LAST TIME VS. CINCINNATI
RU nearly played to a draw at Cincinnati back on Oct. 20, 2012, but yielded a Bearcat goal in the 87th minute to fall 1-0. The Scarlet Knights withstood a 19-9 shot advantage by the Bearcats. Underclassmen took the prime chances for the Scarlet Knights in the setback. Mael Corboz took three shots for the Scarlet Knights, forcing a save by UC goalkeeper Taylor Hafling at the 15:30 mark while former midfielder Connor Hurff placed a 78th minute shot on goal, but the Bearcat net minder was also equal to that attempt. Former keeper Kevin McMullen made two first half saves while directing RU’s defense for the full 90 minutes against the array of Bearcat shots. The deciding shot and goal snuck over the top of McMullen on an attempt on goal by sophomore Bearcat forward Cole Denormandie with 87:36 on the clock.
SCOUTING THE BEARCATS
Cincinnati comes to Yurcak Field with a 3-6-1 overall mark and 0-2-2 record in AAC matches. Although the Bearcats have just three wins on the season, two of those wins have come on the road including Wednesday’s 1-0 shutout at Cleveland State. That win snapped a four-game winless streak for Cincinnati, including a 2-0 shutout against Memphis and a 2-1 loss to UCF in conference play.
Junior midfielder Ashani Walker leads the team with nine points (4G, 1A) with junior midfielder Alan Rovira, sophomore forward John Manga and freshman forward Brad Miguel accounting for the other Bearcat goals on the season. Walker is tied for third in the league in points (9) and goals (4).
In goal, sophomore Alex Gill is posting a 1.03 goals against average, .814 save percentage and averaging 4.14 saves per game having made seven starts. Redshirt junior Taylor Hafling made starts in the first three Bearcat contests of the year and holds a 2.80 goals against average and .632 save percentage.
Rutgers is 3-3-0 at home this season. The Scarlet Knights are looking to snap a two-game losing streak at Yurcak following a 1-0 loss to SMU and 3-0 setback to Hofstra.
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