Menís Soccer Travels To Rival Elon With SoCon Title Implications At Stake
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG men’s soccer team heads into the regular season finale Saturday with plenty to play for as the Spartans travel down I-40 to battle rival Elon at 7 p.m. UNCG enters the game in second place in the Southern Conference standings with a 3-1-1 record, trailing only Wofford (4-1-0) and just in front of Elon (3-2-0). The game will be video streamed for free and will have live stats via Elon with links available at www.uncgspartans.com.
The Spartans are one of three teams in contention for the Southern Conference regular season championship heading into the finale. UNCG can claim the SoCon Championship for the eighth time in program history with a win over Elon and a Wofford loss at Furman Saturday night. The Spartans will share the SoCon title with a win and a Wofford tie Saturday, giving UNCG the second seed in the SoCon Tournament. Wofford and Elon are also in contention for at least a share of the SoCon title depending on outcomes Saturday night.
UNCG enters Saturday’s game with an 8-7-2 overall record and a 3-1-1 mark in SoCon play. The Spartans are coming off a 2-1 overtime loss at No. 11 Virginia Tuesday night in a heated affair. Senior midfielder Oddur Gudmundsson (Reykjavik, Iceland/Breidholti) scored the Spartans’ lone goal in the loss, finding the back of the net in the 69th minute of play for his second goal of the year.
Junior forward David Reittinger (Greensboro, N.C./Northwest Guilford) leads the team in scoring with 11 points on the year. Reittinger has scored four goals this season while handing out three assists. Redshirt sophomore Dustin Gamradt (Kiel, Germany/Hebbleschule) has scored a team-high five goals, three of which have come in SoCon play.
Senior Brian Graham (Bowie, Md./Bowie) is third on the team in scoring with seven points on the strength of two goals and four assists. Redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Stephen Moffitt (Burlington, N.C./Williams) has played all but 110 minutes in goal and owns a 1.40 goals against average with six shutouts.
Head coach Justin Maullin will miss Saturday’s game due to an automatic one-game suspension after being assessed a red card in the Spartans’ overtime loss at No. 11 Virginia.
Elon enters Saturday’s game with a 12-4-1 overall record and a 3-2-0 mark in Southern Conference play. The Phoenix can win a share of the SoCon title with a victory over UNCG and a Wofford loss to Furman. Elon has dropped SoCon games this season to Wofford and Furman in league play but are coming off a 2-1 victory over No. 6 Coastal Carolina.
The Phoenix has scored 27 goals in 17 games while allowing 16 goals against. Jason Waterman leads the team in scoring with 20 points having scored seven goals and dishing out six assists. James Brace leads the team with eight goals while Matt Wescoe has handed out seven helpers. Nathan Dean has played all but five minutes in goal and owns a 0.90 goals against average with five shutouts.
Saturday’s game marks the 19th meeting all-time between UNCG and Elon. The Spartans hold a 10-6-2 record against the Phoenix but have gone just 1-5-0 over the last six meetings. UNCG posted a 1-0 victory in 2010, the last time it played in Burlington. Last year, the Phoenix picked up a 2-1 double overtime victory in Greensboro as Matt Wescoe scored in the 108th minute. The two teams combined for 30 shots, 18 corner kicks and two-penalty kick saves in the wild affair. Former Spartan Hakan Ilhan scored in the 42nd minute while Chris Thomas tallied a goal in the 77th minute.
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