Men's soccer begins championship run Saturday vs. Binghamton
Nov. 2, 2012
2012 Stony Brook Men's Soccer
Game #17: America East Quarterfinals
Sat., Nov. 3 • LaValle Stadium • Stony Brook, N.Y. • 12 p.m.
Stony Brook Seawolves (10-5-1, 4-3-0 America East)
Binghamton Bearcats (6-10-1, 2-5-0 America East)
The Matchup: Stony Brook begins defense of its America East Championship title with a quarterfinal match against Binghamton. This is the fourth consecutive season that SB has qualified for the tournament and has won two of them in that span. This is the 34th all-time meeting between these two teams, and the Bearcats lead the series 21-10-2, but the Seawolves have won four straight in the series. The two teams have met once before in the postseason on Nov. 12, 2005 at LaValle Stadium. That night was the America East final, and the match ended in a 1-1 tie, but the Seawolves advanced with a 4-2 penalty kicks victory.
The Opponent: Binghamton had started the conference season a promising 2-0-0, but a 2-1 loss to Stony Brook on Oct. 10 sent the Bearcats into a six-game winless streak to end the regular season. The team did play a non-conference game on Tuesday, tying Bucknell 2-2. The Bearcats have not scored a goal against an America East team since the Stony Brook game on Oct. 10. Nonetheless, Jake Keegan poses a threat for the Seawolves. He is Binghamton's leading scorer with 10 goals and three assists that helped him earn All-America East first team honors.
Last Time Out: Stony Brook was three minutes away from a regular season championship, holding a 1-0 lead at Vermont last Saturday, but the Catamounts staged a comeback, scoring a goal late to force overtime, and UVM then scored again in the first overtime to win 2-1. Martin Giordano had scored the goal for Stony Brook with assists from Leonardo Fernandes and Berian Gobeil Cruz.
Postseason History: Stony Brook is 5-3-3 all-time in America East Championship matches, and the team has advanced by penalty kicks in each of the three ties. The Seawolves are also undefeated in home playoff games with a 5-0-2 record.
America East Honors: The Seawolves cleaned up in the America East awards this season. Leonardo Fernandes was crowned America East Midfielder of the Year for the third consecutive season. He also was named first-team All-America East for the third straight year. Raphael Abreu, Berian Gobeil Cruz, Marius Krathe and Kyle Schlesinger were all named second-team All-America East. Alejandro Fritz and Martin Giordano were both named to the All-Rookie team, and Schlesinger was also placed on the All-Academic team.
In the Rankings: Stony Brook has been ranked in the NSCAA Northeast Region poll each week this season except for one. Here are the Seawolves weekly rankings.
Quite the Rankings Debut: In the NCAA's first RPI rating of the 2012 season released on Oct. 16, the Seawolves came in at No. 46, the highest ranked team in America East. RPI, which is the Ratings Percentage Index, is a formula used to rank all the teams in Div. I soccer and is a component of how teams are chosen for at-large berths into the NCAA Tournament.
Starting Fast the Key: Stony Brook is 17-2-1 under head coach Ryan Anatol when the team scores the first goal of the game. Both losses have come this season (Oct. 5 vs. Boston University, Oct. 27 at Vermont)
Leo the Lion: Senior Leonardo Fernandes is quickly rising up the Stony Brook Men's Soccer record book. As one of the program's most decorated student-athletes, he has posted some incredible numbers and earned some outstanding honors. Here's the list:
Keeper Records: After a 1-0 shutout at Albany on Sept. 29, senior Stefan Manz is now the all-time leader in career shutouts in program history with 18. He is also first all-time in goalkeeper wins in program history with 28.
America East Rookie of the Week: Martin Giordano was named America East Rookie of the Week on Sept. 24 for posting a goal and an assist in Stony Brook's 1-0-1 week. Giordano scored less than a minute into SB's match at Sacred Heart and then assisted on the game-tying goal at Central Connecticut.
America East Player of the Week: Following a three-goal, one-assist weekend Sept. 14-16, Leonardo Fernandes was named America East Player of the Week for the fourth time in his career.
Making the pass: Freshman Alejandro Fritz notched a pair of assists vs. Buffalo on Sept. 16, matching the program's all-time single-game record. It's the 12th time in program history it's occurred. Fritz also scored a goal two days earlier against Fordham, giving him a strong four-point weekend.
What a Start: Freshman Alejandro Fritz scored a goal on his first collegiate shot, and it represented the game-winner in a 5-0 win over Fairleigh Dickinson on Aug. 24. The effort netted Fritz America East Rookie of the Week honors.
Preseason Pick: Stony Brook goes into 2012 as the favorite to repeat as America East champion. The Seawolves were picked first in the preseason coaches poll, receiving six out of a possible seven first-place votes.
Tough Schedule: Stony Brook has a tough 16-game schedule that includes eight matches against teams that finished in the top 100 in RPI last season.
Up Next: If Stony Brook wins, it will advance to the semifinals and will play at UMBC Wednesday at 7 p.m.