Soccer Week Six Preview
HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, VA - The Hampden-Sydney Soccer team will look to extend it's winning streak this week with a road contest on Wednesday at 7 p.m. vs. Eastern Mennonite and on Saturday with a homecoming match against non-conference for Marymount University on Saturday at 3 p.m. Live Stats will be available for each contest, please go here for access.
The Tigers started the season with two wins then dropped three straight contests. Since then, the Tigers have responded resoundingly, winning four of their last five games. In that stretch, Hampden-Sydney has tallied two shutouts and two games with only one goal allowed. The Tiger defense has proven to be the calling card for the Tigers with their recent winning ways. In the last five games, Hampen-Sydney has allowed just 10.8 shots and 4.2 shots on goal per game. After allowing 21 corner kicks in the first five matches, Tiger opponents have only been rewarded with 13.
Eastern Mennonite has gotten off to a strong, surprising start in the ODAC. The Royals were picked to finish in ninth place in the ODAC Preseason Poll, however, EMU checks in at second place with nearly every team having played at least four ODAC contests. While no ODAC game is an easy win, EMU has faced some of the best teams in the ODAC thus far as they have defeated Randolph, Washington & Lee, and Emory & Henry while losing to Roanoke.
Mitchell Leap has proven to be the star on the Royals squad as he ranks second in the ODAC in points (15) and goals (7). A clutch scorer this year, four of his seven scores have been game winners. Eastern Mennonite has struggled to find an additional goal scorer to put alongside Leap as six other players have combined for only seven goals. However, the Royals have shown off tremendous teamwork on the offensive end as they have 12 assists on their 14 goals.
The key to the game will be if Hampden-Sydney can score two or more goals on the Royals. EMU is just 1-6-1 when allowing multiple goals while the Tigers are undefeated at 6-0 when scoring at least two goals. If EMU can contain the Tiger offense, they have a strong chance of winning as they are 4-0 when surrendering one or fewer scores.
Marymount University has faced a rough season with a 2-4-3 overall record. The Saints opened the season with a 2-0 win over ODAC rival Bridgewater College but has since gone to four overtime contests, coming out with an 0-1-3 record in those contests. The Saints and Tigers have several common opponents. Marymount tied Greensboro, lost to Virginia Wesleyan, and defeated Shenandoah for a 1-1-1 record while Hampden-Sydney has gone 2-1 against the same three foes.
Kjell Crooke leads the Saints offense with eight points on two goals and four assists while converting one penalty kick attempt. George Delgado has a team-leading three goals for six points and Onar Yousefi has posted two goals. MU primarily relying on just two players for the majority of its offense as Crooke and Delgado have combined for 52 of the team's 116 shots while no other player has attempted more than nine.
Despite only having two wins, the MU defense has not surrendered a bevy of goals. Through nine games, the team boasts a 1.95 goals against average along with three shutouts. Additionally, they have allowed just one goal in two other contests. However, their goals against average has ben inflated due to allowing seven goals to Virginia Wesleyan and five to Catholic.
A big key against MU will once again be if Hampden-Sydney can score two or more goals as Marymount is 0-4 this when allowing multiple goals while they check in at 2-0-3 in their remaining matches.