JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Nov. 11, 2009) - The ETSU men's soccer team is set to face No.2 Stetson on Thursday at 4 p.m. in an Atlantic Sun semifinal match at the Eakes Athletic Complex on the campus of Campbell University in Buies Creek, N.C.
""We have great respect for Stetson," said head coach Scott Calabrese. "They are the second seed in the A-Sun Tournament and defeated us in the regular season. Given that I would say we are the underdog in the match. I feel that we are playing very well here at the end of the season. Winning the last three games, and five of seven has given our team a lot of confidence. I think the players now believe that individually and collectively we belong in the final group, and that we can win."
The winner of the Stetson and ETSU semifinal will move on to the A-Sun Championship match on Saturday at 1 p.m. and would face the winner of the Mercer/Campbell semifinal.
"I think it will be a very even match," Calabrese said. "Playoff soccer is always about capitalizing on mistakes, and at the end of the season fatigue can be an issue. We have to be determined to continue our season and to ‘survive and advance' to the final, and mental lapses can't occur."
The Bucs (6-8-3, 4-4-1 A-Sun) have won five of their last seven matches including a first round tournament win over Lipscomb, 3-0. The Buccaneers feature Sean Hoek (Newburgh, Ind.) and Scott Rosman (Kenner, La.), as they had six players named All-Conference. Hoek has a team-best five goals and two game-winners, while Rosman has a league-best 1.11 goals against average.
ETSU dropped a 1-0 decision to the Hatters in the only meeting between the two teams this year. Stetson got the game winner on a Fredrick Brustad breakaway goal in the 49th minute of a game where the Bucs dominated in shots, 20-12.
Stetson (12-3-2, 6-2-1 A-Sun) has won two of its last three including wins over Mercer and Florida Gulf Coast. The Hatters placed five players on the A-Sun All-Conference list including the Defensive Player of the Year Robert Hodge.
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