|October 03, 2017||1st||2nd||Final|
|ETSU||38:36||Nick Spielman (Serge Gomis )|
|ETSU||43:50||Bruno Andrade (Serge Gomis , Fletcher Ekern)|
|ETSU||79:54||Richmond Taylor (Josh Denton )|
|Stats at a Glance||ETSU||VMI|
|Shots (on Goal)||14 (9)||1 (0)|
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Sept. 25, 2017) – After picking up its first win in conference play and fourth overall by defeating Wofford, 3-2, the ETSU men’s soccer team hits the road again for a match against VMI in Lexington, Virginia Oct. 3 at 4 p.m.
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Last Time Out
The Bucs fell behind twice in the first half, but had an answer for every Wofford goal and would eventually score the game winner early in the second half for a 3-2 victory in Spartanburg, S.C. last Saturday.
After falling behind 1-0 in the second minute of play, senior defender Ben Holt buried a shot from just outside the 18 into the right corner, giving ETSU the equalizer in the eighth minute.
After ETSU allowed a penalty kick goal near halftime, junior midfielder Nick Spielman (Melbourne, Fla.) scored the tying and game-winning goals for ETSU, as both scores came off headers and off assists from sophomore forward Bruno Andrade (Sao Paulo) on free kicks.
The goals were Spielman’s first since transferring to ETSU after the 2015 season. Andrade’s assists give him a conference-leading total of five for the season.
ETSU Quick Facts
Virginia Military Institute comes into Tuesday’s game at 0-7-2 overall and 0-2 in conference contests with Furman and Mercer, respectively. The Keydets are on a five-game losing skid.
There is only one common opponent between VMI and ETSU so far – the Liberty Flames. VMI fell 3-0 in Lynchburg early in the season, while ETSU later defeated Liberty in a 1-0 shutout on the road.
In 45 seasons of play, dating back to 1972, the Keydets hold a 174-540-43 all-time record. After leaving in 2002 for the Big South, VMI rejoined the Southern Conference in 2014 – the same year ETSU joined.
VMI is led by head coach Michael Bonelli, who in his second season is still seeking his first win in 26 attempts. Bonelli came to VMI from St. Mary’s in San Antonio, Texas, where he led his team to 16 victories over two years to give the program one of the best two-year spans in its history.
Scouting the Keydets
VMI averages just 6.6 shots per game and 0.44 goals per game, but leads the conference with 61 saves and 6.78 saves per game. The Keydets also show their discipline with a conference-low 100 total fouls. ETSU posts the second-fewest amount in the conference with 106 fouls.
Two of VMI’s four goals came off the foot of senior David Wright, who toggles between midfielder and forward and leads the team with 17 shots and nine shots on goal.
The other two goals came courtesy of freshman Willson Tuck, who has appeared in all seven games with two starts and only three shots.
At keeper, senior Jon Harrington has received seven of the team’s nine starts and has combated more shots than anyone in the conference and has recorded 42 saves while allowing 25 goals. His 5.25 saves per game rank 14th in the nation.
ETSU and VMI History
ETSU holds an 8-0 all-time record against VMI, with four wins on the road and four wins at home.
The Bucs have outscored VMI by a combined 24-4 in the eight contests, two of which took place in 2008 and 2009 while the others have all been in SoCon action dating back to 2014.
The Bucs have shutout the Keydets in five of the eight contests. Last season, ETSU earned a 3-0 victory at Summers-Taylor Stadium before traveling to Lexington seven days later to take a 5-1 win.
In the last matchup between the two, sophomore Joe Pickering (East Sussex, England) and seniors Fletcher Ekern (Knoxville, Tenn.) and Cameron Woodfin (Old Hickory, Tenn.) all picked up four point games. Pickering and Ekern turned in two goals apiece, while Woodfin scored the final goal and assisted on both goals by Ekern.
In the 3-0 win last season, senior Jeffrey George (Safety Harbor, Fla.), junior Serge Gomis (Dakar, Senegal) and Ekern each recorded goals, while Woodfin picked up two more assists.
ETSU Record Watch
Ekern has 22 career goals and is four goals away from tying the program career goal record held by David Geno (26). His last score against Radford broke a tie for second place with Ramalho at 21.
Ekern also ranks fifth all-time for career game-winning goals and needs seven to tie Geno, the current record holder with 11.
After a breakout 2016 season that saw a NCAA-high and ETSU single-season record 12 assists, Woodfin is second on the all-time career list at ETSU with 17 total assists. Woodfin needs four more assists to break the program record held by Geno (20).
Junior goalkeeper Jonny Sutherland (Chester, U.K.) is in line to become one of the greatest keepers in ETSU history, as he came into the season with the career record for highest save percentage at .766. With 29 saves this season, Sutherland ranks second on the career saves list at 169, trailing Ryan Coulter who has 182.
Sutherland also needs eight shutouts and seven wins to tie the program career records held by Coulter in each category.
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