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Liberty to Begin Conference Play at Winthrop
The Liberty Flames men's soccer team will open Big South Conference play on Saturday. The Flames will travel to Rock Hill, S.C. for a match with the Winthrop Eagles. Match time is scheduled for 2 p.m.
Perineal contenders for the conference crown, both teams are off to strong starts to their 2014 campaigns. Liberty will enter the contest with a 5-1-1 mark, while Winthrop has posted a 6-2 record to open the year. In addition, the matchup will feature the two top scoring teams in the Big South, as Liberty leads the conference by averaging 2.71 goals per game. Winthrop is second in the Big South with a 2.50 goals per game average.
Liberty Flames Sports Network's Alan York talked with head coach Jeff Alder and freshman midfielder Jovanni Chavez to preview this Saturday's game at Winthrop and look back at this past week's action.
How to Follow the Flames
A free live video stream courtesy of the Big South Network will be available by clicking the appropriate link on the schedule/results panel under men's soccer on LibertyFlames.com.
In addition, live stats will be available through the Winthrop media relations office for the contest and can also be accessed by clicking the appropriate link on the men's soccer schedule/results panel of LibertyFlames.com.
A Look at Liberty
Liberty, 5-1-1, recorded its second shutout of the 2014, defeating visiting Howard, 4-0, Tuesday evening at Osborne Stadium. Sachem Wilson netted two goals, the second multiple goal game by a Flames' player this season, while Jamie Foxwell and Jovanni Chavez also scored for Liberty.
Liberty enters the week having outscored its opponents, 19-7. The Flames lead the Big South Conference in goals per game with a 2.71 average and are second in goals allowed with a 1.00 goals per game average. Liberty ranks fifth nationally in total goals and sixth in goals per game in the latest NCAA statistical report.
Six different Flames have netted two or more goals each, while 10 different Liberty players have scored at least one goal in 2014. With his first two-goal game of the year and the fourth of his career on Tuesday, Sachem Wilson now leads the Flames with four goals and eight points on the year. The junior enters the weekend second in the Big South in goals.
After recording his second shutout of the year, goalkeeper Scott Sutarik enters the Saturday's contest with a 0.96 goals-against average. Currently, Sutarik leads the Big South with a .750 save percentage and is second in goals-against average. The senior recorded a season-high six saves against Davidson, last Saturday.
Liberty alumnus Jeff Alder is in his 14th season at the helm of the Flames. Liberty has posted a 132-93-23 mark during his tenure.
A Look at Winthrop
In the midst of six consecutive matches at home, the Eagles, 6-2, defeated East Tennessee State, 4-2, Tuesday evening at Eagle Field. Winthrop is 3-1 during its home span.
The Eagles have outscored their opponents, 20-11. Winthrop is second in the Big South in goals per game with 2.50 average. The Eagles have posted two shutouts in 2014. Winthrop enters the weekend ranked fourth nationally in total goals and 11th in goals per game per the latest NCAA statistical report.
The reigning Big South Attacking Player of the Week Jordan Stoddart and Magnus Thorsson lead Winthrop with four goals each. The Eagles have five players who have scored two or more goals this season.
Winthrop head coach Rich Posipanko is in his 25th season. Posipanko has guided the Eagles to a 246-204-32 record during his tenure.
Spreading the Wealth
Liberty has had 10 players score at least one goal this season. The Flames also have had six players net two or more goals. Liberty has outscored their opponents, 19-7, and leads the Big South Conference with a 2.71 goals per game average.
In addition, six different Flames have netted their first goal in a Liberty uniform in 2014. Freshmen Alan Arellano, Jovanni Chavez, Bay Kurtz and Troy Reeves along with transfer Khalil Karl and junior defender Jamie Foxwell have all scored the first goal of their collegiate careers.
Flames News and Notes
- With its win on Tuesday over Howard, the Flames moved to 2-1 on the year at Osborne Stadium this season.
- Liberty is 3-0-1 away from Osborne Stadium this season. The Flames are 1-0-1 in away contests and 2-0 in neutral site matches.
- The Flames have scored two or more goals in six of their seven games this season. Liberty has also scored four or more goals twice in 2014.
- Newcomers continue to make their mark. The Flames have had seven players see significant minutes in five or more matches that were not on the roster last season.
- With the shutout on Tuesday, goalkeeper Scott Sutarik has amassed 18 shutouts during his career. The senior ranks fourth on the program's all-time list. He now needs one more to tie Dean Short for third place.
- Sutarik enters the week with a career 0.92 goals-against average. He ranks third on the program's all-time list. Assistant Coach Andrew Madero tops the list with a 0.52 goals-against average. Madero played for the Flames from 2008-09.
- Midfielder Tim Harbison will be making his 45th consecutive start, Tuesday night. The junior has been among Liberty's starting 11 in every game of his Flames' career.
A Look Ahead
Liberty will next travel to Radford, Va., for a Big South match against the Radford Highlanders, Oct. 4. Match time at Cupp Stadium is scheduled for 6 p.m.