Oct. 30, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s soccer team travels to face Maryland at 7 p.m. ET Saturday at Ludwig Field in College Park, Md. The Buckeyes (7-5-4) concluded their regular-season home schedule last time out with a 1-1 draw vs. No. 16 Kentucky and are unbeaten in their last four matches, while the Terrapins (9-5-2) have won six-consecutive matches.
Saturday’s meeting in College Park features two Top 25 teams in the NCAA Rating Percentage Index as the Buckeyes are No. 22, and the Terrapins are No. 23 in the RPI.
BIG TEN TITLE RACE With two conference matches remaining on the schedule, the Buckeyes are second in the Big Ten standings with a 4-2 mark behind Penn State (5-2). Michigan State (3-1-2) follows with 11 points, while Indiana (3-2-1) and Maryland (3-2-1) are tied for fourth with 10 points. The Top 4 seeds of the Big Ten Tournament beginning Nov. 8 will host a quarterfinal match. Here’s how the race breaks down with a week to go:
B1G Upcoming Schedule: OSU at MD (T-4th), at MICH (7th) PSU at NW (6th) MD vs. OSU (2nd), at RU (8th) MSU (3rd) vs. MICH (7th), at IU (T-4th) IND (T-4th) at WIS (9th), vs. MSU (3rd)
WAY TO FOLLOW There are a variety of ways to follow the action from College Park. The match at Maryland will be streamed on BTN Plus ($). A link to live stats will also be available from the calendar tab on the front page of OhioStateBuckeyes.com or the men’s soccer schedule page. Twitter updates also will be available from @OhioState_MSOC.
BUCKEYES IN A NUTSHELL • The Buckeyes are 7-5-4 on the season and are unbeaten in their last four matches, tying No. 16 Kentucky last time out in Columbus. Earlier this month, the team defeated back-to-back Top 20 opponents, downing No. 5 Louisville, 1-0, Sept. 30 before winning against No. 17 Michigan State, 3-2, Oct. 4 in Columbus. The team began the season with a five-match unbeaten streak, collecting wins against Northwestern and Elon, while claiming draws against Butler, UC Davis and UNC Wilmington. • Ohio State is 3-3-1 away from Columbus in 2014. • Ohio State sits at No. 22 in the latest NCAA RPI poll. Ten opponents on the 2014 schedule rank in the Top 30. • Senior midfielder Yianni Sarris leads the squad with a season-high 14 points on five goals and four assists, while Liam Doyle (5g, 0a), Kyle Culbertson (3g, 2a), Marcus McCrary (2g, 1a), Danny Jensen (3g, 1a) and Christian Soldat (2g, 1a), Ryan Ivancic (1g, 3a) and Joao Ehlers (1g, 0a) have also netted scores. • Senior goalkeeper Alex Ivanov, a Senior CLASS Award Finalist, is 7-5-4 with a 0.90 goals-against average and .817 save percentage with six shutouts in 16 matches. • The Buckeyes are3-2-2 at home this season. • Jensen was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week on Monday for the first weekly conference honor of his career. •mOhio State returns nine starters, including Ivanov, who was named a 2013 second All-Big Ten selection, while Jensen and Kidwell earned All-Freshmen Team laurels. John Bluem, who enters his 18th season as head coach of the Buckeyes, welcomes a total of 12 new players to Columbus, including a talented group of eight true freshmen. • Ivanov, Jensen and Culbertson were each named to the Big Ten Preseason to Watch List.
LAST TIME OUT Ohio State finished off the home regular-season slate with a 1-1 double overtime draw against No. 16 Kentucky. The Buckeyes move to 2-2-1 this season against Top 25 opponents. Down 1-0, senior midfielder Ryan Ivancic tied the contest in the 25th minute for his first goal of the year. Ivancic was set up by a nifty no-look pass from classmate Yianni Sarris – a teammate of Ivancic from St. Ignatius High School. Either team could not find the back of the net for the remainder of the match to end in a draw on Senior Night. Overall, both teams collected 15 shots, while Kentucky had a 7-3 lead in corners.
2014 SENIOR CLASS The 2014 senior class has made more than a combined 150 career starts and will look to guide the team for a postseason run in the coming weeks. Alex Ivanov, Yianni Sarris, Andrian McAdams, Zach Dobey, Konrad Kucharski, Ryan Ivancic and Max Moller were recognized before the start of the contest vs. the Wildcats.
JENSEN NAMED B1G OFFENSIVE POW Danny Jensen, a sophomore forward on the Ohio State men’s soccer team, was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week, the conference office announced Monday. Jensen, a native of Weston, Fla., receives his first career weekly honor. Jensen, who was named to the Big Ten Preseason to Watch List earlier this year, scored a pair of goals in the 4-1 conference win over Rutgers last weekend in Columbus. Jensen gave the squad an early 1-0 lead in the opening minute when he headed in a far cross by senior Max Moller from eight yards into the back of the net. The 2013 Big Ten All-Freshman team selection, Jensen then extended lead to 3-1 after netting his third goal of the season following a through ball pass from teammate Yianni Sarris at 45:28.
BUCKEYES DOWN RUTGERS Sophomore Danny Jensen scored a pair of goals, while Liam Doyle and Kyle Culbertson also found the back of the net in the 4-1 over Rutgers last Saturday night in Columbus. Jensen netted home goals in the first and 46th minutes, respectively, while Doyle blasted in the team’s second goal in the 36th minute on a free kick from 20 yards out. Culbertson concluded the scoring clinic when he volleyed in the team’s fourth goal in the 65th. Overall, shots were 11-6 in favor of Ohio State, while the Buckeyes had a 5-3 lead in corner kicks in the first meeting between the two schools.
DOYLE STRIKES AGAIN Junior back Liam Doyle has been one of the top defensive players in the conference this season in his first year at Ohio State and has also been dangerous on set pieces. The native of Isle of Man, U.K., Doyle has collected five goals this season, including most recently on a free kick from 20 yards out in a 4-1 win over Rutgers Oct. 28. He’s scored three of his five goals on penalty kicks, while the other two scores have come from free kick opportunities.
SCOUTING MARYLAND After a slow start to the 2014 season, Maryland has been one of the toughest teams in the nation in the last three weeks, claiming wins in six-consecutive matches, including conference wins over nationally-ranked Penn State and Indiana. Maryland has outscored its opponents, Last time out, the Terrapins defeated Hartwick, 5-2, led by David Kabelik who scored two goals, while Mael Corboz, Tsubasa Endoh and Dan Metzger also netted goals. Corboz leads the team with 17 points (7g, 3a), while goalkeeper Zach Steffen is 9-5-2 with a 0.91 goals-against average with six shutouts. SERIES HISTORY • Maryland leads the all-time series vs. Ohio State, 2-0. The meeting will be the third in school history between the two programs and first since the 2003 campaign. Both losses vs. the Terrapins were on the road in College Park.
IVANOV NAMED SENIOR CLASS AWARD FINALIST Senior goalkeeper Alex Ivanov was named one of 10 finalists for the 2014 Senior CLASS Award, the organization announced last week. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as a Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition.
Ivanov is in his first year as captain for the Buckeyes. The native of Strongsville, Ohio, Ivanov graduated last spring with a bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering, collecting an impressive 3.70 cumulative GPA. He is currently pursuing a second degree in sports industry as a post graduate independent study this fall. In addition to his work in the classroom, Ivanov has volunteered with the 2nd and 7 Foundation, reading to elementary students. He also has been a part of three different “Kids Kicking Cancer” events. On the field, Ivanov was named a second team All-Big Ten selection and was selected as Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week three times during his junior season. This year, Ivanov has led the majority of the season in saves in the Big Ten.
The Senior CLASS Award winners will be announced during the 2014 NCAA Men’s and Women’s College Cup® championships in December. Fans are encourage to log on to the senior class award website and vote up to Nov. 24th
IN THE MIX Ohio State is No. 22 in the latest Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) published by the NCAA this week. Six Big Ten teams are in the Top 25, making the Big Ten and the Atlantic Coast with at least six teams in the Top 25 in the country. In all, ten opponents on the team’s schedule are ranked in the Top 30.
The RPI is one of the most important criteria to determine the field for the NCAA Division I Men’s Tournament. It is a mathematical formula designed to objectively compare a team’s won-lost record, opponents’ strength of schedule, opponents’ opponents’ strength of schedule and the bonus/penalty system.