SoCon semifinal preview against UNCG
SoCon semifinal preview against UNCG
Thursday, November 12, 2015

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Nov. 12, 2015) – Head coach Bo Oshoniyi and the ETSU men’s soccer team are preparing for UNCG in the semifinal match of the Southern Conference Tournament on Friday at 3:30 p.m.

SoCon Tournament Information

ETSU will be hosting the two semifinals matches and the championship game for the SoCon men’s soccer tournament. Friday will consist of two semifinal games. The first game starts at 3:30 p.m. and features the No. 4 seed Bucs versus the No. 1 seed Spartans, and the second game of the afternoon will be the No. 2 seed Furman and No. 3 seed Mercer at 6 p.m.

The championship game will be played at Summers-Taylor Stadium on Nov. 15th at 1 p.m. The winners of Friday’s games will square off in the SoCon Tournament Championship.

Looking for a new result

The Bucs and Spartans have played four straight games that have gone into overtime including an ETSU loss in the first round of the SoCon Tournament last year. 2015-16 Player of the Year, Jacques Francois, scored the game-winner in the 104th minute of the SoCon tournament against ETSU. However, ETSU ultimately shutdown Francois as he has taken eight shots with three on goal in head-to-head matchups this year.

Damieon Thomas has stepped up for the Spartans this year against the Bucs. Thomas has scored the only goals for UNCG in regular season matchups against ETSU. Like Thomas, Fletcher Ekern (Knoxville, Tenn.) has been the only Buccaneer to find the back of the net against the Spartans this year. Both head-to-head matches this season have resulted in 1-1 ties including one at Summers-Taylor Stadium.

What do the Bucs have to do to win?

ETSU needs to get on the board first, which they have done twice in the last four games against UNCG. The Spartans have surrendered seven goals this year in the first half. However, UNCG likes to get ahead early as they have netted 40 percent of their goals in the first half, but the Spartans are known for increasing the pressure in the second half.

In the most recent matchup between ETSU and UNCG, the Spartans found themselves behind in the 60th minute, but UNCG outshot the Bucs 13-2 in the second half and eventually scored the game-tying goal in the 63rd minute.

The Bucs’ defense needs to shut down the Spartan frontline to give the Buccaneer attack a chance to get on the board. If overtime is necessary to decide a winner, UNCG doesn’t stop taking shots as they have outshot the opposition 32 to 14 and won 25 percent of their overtime matches. If the match is still tied after two overtime periods, the Spartans have not stopped a penalty kick this season.

Interesting Statistics

  • Ekern is ranked 32nd in goals per game (0.59) and 39th nationally in points per game (1.35)
  • UNCG (16.25) and ETSU (14.59) are the top two teams in the SoCon in shots taken per game
  • The last time UNCG won the SoCon Tournament was in 2010
  • The Spartans have appeared in 18 SoCon tournaments and have a 28-13-1 record and have made it to the semifinals 15 times
  • Goalie Jonny Sutherland (Chester, U.K.) is now fifth in active leaders in wins

To follow the game via live stats or live video, the links are under the related links section at the top of this page.

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For more information on Buccaneer men’s soccer, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s soccer page.