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Oct. 21, 2014

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s soccer team will begin to wrap up the 2014 home schedule with a midweek contest vs. Bowling Green at 7 p.m. ET Wednesday at Bert L. & Iris S. Wolstein Field at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The Buckeyes (5-5-3, 3-2-0 Big Ten) return home after shutting out Wisconsin, 2-0, last weekend in Madison. The Falcons (9-3-1, 0-1-1 MAC) travel to Columbus following a 1-1 draw at home vs. Buffalo. 

Ohio State returns to Big Ten action this weekend, welcoming Rutgers at 7 p.m. Saturday at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. Rutgers (4-8-1, 1-4-1 Big Ten) host Army in a midweek match before traveling to Columbus for the first meeting in program history vs. the Buckeyes. 

WAY TO FOLLOW  Fans that cannot make it out to Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, there are a variety of ways to follow the action. The match vs. the Falcons will be streamed on BTN Plus ($), while the Big Ten contest vs. the Scarlet Knights will be on Buckeye Vision ($). 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 • With three weeks to go in the regular season, the Buckeyes are 5-5-3 on the season.  Two weeks ago, 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.  • The match vs. the Falcons will be the first of three-consecutive contests in Columbus.  • Ohio State sits at No. 27 in the latest NCAA RPI poll. Ten opponents on the 2014 schedule rank in the Top 40.    • Senior midfielder Yianni Sarris leads the squad with a season-high 10 points on four goals and two assists, while Liam Doyle (3g, 0a), Marcus McCrary (2g, 1a), Kyle Culbertson (2g, 0a), Danny Jensen (1g, 1a), Christian Soldat (1g, 0a). and Joao Ehlers (1g, 0a) have also netted scores.  • Senior goalkeeper Alex Ivanov, a Senior CLASS Award Candidate, is 5-5-3 with a 0.95 goals-against average and .819 save percentage with five shutouts in 13 matches.  • The Buckeyes are 2-2-2 at home this season.  • The Scarlet and Gray are fourth in the current Big Ten standings behind Penn State (4-2), Michigan State (3-1) and Maryland (3-2-1).  • Ohio 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 week. Jensen is the leading returning scorer from last season with three goals and three assists to his credit as a freshman. Ivanov, a 2013 Academic All-American, was second in the nation in saves from a season ago, collecting 110 stops for the Scarlet and Gray. 

LAST TIME OUT Sophomore Christian Soldat scored his first goal of 2014, while freshman Marcus McCrary tallied a season-best three points (1g, 1a) to defeat the Badgers, 2-0, Oct. 18 in Madison. Soldat gave the squad a 1-0 lead in the 35th minute when he sent in a header. McCrary, a native of Madison, Wis., then sealed the win with his second career goal in the final minute of regulation, beating the UW keeper to the far post at 89:06. Senior goalkeeper Alex Ivanov was supported by a strong defensive effort for the entire 90 minutes and only had to make one save, while six different Buckeyes posted a shot on target vs. the Badgers. 

SCOUTING BOWLING GREEN  The Falcons come into Wednesday night’s matchup with an overall record of 9-3-1 following a draw and a loss in their first two conference matches of the season. Bowling Green is 1-1 overall against Big Ten opponents this year, dropping a 1-0 loss to Michigan State Sept. 24 and edging Michigan, 1-0, on the road in Ann Arbor Sept. 16. The Falcons will look to continue their success on the road as they have gone 4-1 in their first five games away from home. The Buckeyes will have to keep their eye on Pat Flynn, currently the national leader in goals per game and the Mid-American Conference leader in shots, points, points per game, goals and goals per game. Goalkeepers Ryan Heuton and Nick Landsberger lead the MAC in goals against average and Heuton leads the conference with a .913 save percentage.

SERIES HISTORY • This will be the 41st meeting between the Buckeyes and the Falcons. Ohio State is 14-24-2 all-time against Bowling Green. • The two teams last met in 2013 when the game resulted in a 0-0 tie after double overtime at Cochrane Field.  • The Buckeyes are undefeated in their last 11 games against the Falcons, with their last loss coming almost exactly 18 years ago on Oct. 23, 1996.  • Ohio State’s last win over the Falcons was at home in 2012 when they captured a 2-0 victory. • Ohio State has not lost at home to Bowling Green since the 1995 season. 

A LOOK AT RUTGERS The Scarlet Knights are 1-2-1 on the road this season, claiming their first Big Ten win in program history with a 3-2 overtime victory at Wisconsin Sept. 12. Last time out in Big Ten play, Rutgers fell 2-0 at home against Northwestern Oct. 18. Freshman forward Jason Wright leads the Scarlet Knights after adding a pair of goals last Tuesday night against Penn with 16 points (7g, 2a) on the year. The Kingston, Jamaica native is second in the Big Ten in points (16), as well as goals per game (0.54). Goalkeeper Mitchell Walier has started the last two matches for Rutgers and is 1-1-0 with a 0.93 goals-against average and an .885 save percentage. 

SERIES HISTORY • The match Saturday night will be the first between the Buckeyes and Scarlet Knights.