|November 05, 2016||1st||2nd||1OT||2OT||Final|
|FGCU||34:50||RUIZ, Albert (SOBERS-ASSUE, Arion , ZAPATA, Dennis)|
|FGCU||60:59||RUIZ, Albert (ZAPATA, Dennis )|
|LIP||62:11||BOTES, Cameron (PAYNTER, Logan )|
|FGCU||100:46||MOHSIN, Rielee (GAVIN, Justin )|
|Stats at a Glance||LIP||FGCU|
|Shots (on Goal)||15 (8)||16 (7)|
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Lipscomb men’s soccer team looks to get over the hump Saturday when it matches up with No. 22 Florida Gulf Coast in the semifinals of the ASUN Championship at 6 p.m. at the FGCU Soccer Complex.
Lipscomb, making its eighth semifinal appearance in 10 years, is seeking to earn a first-ever trip to the conference championship match.
The Bisons are on a roll and are playing their best soccer of the season and will enter the match with the No. 2 Eagles 5-0-1 in their last six outings. The only draw came against FGCU last weekend in Nashville, a 1-1 decision on Senior Night.
Lipscomb opened postseason play with a bang Thursday evening when it rolled through the third-seeded Stetson Hatters, 3-0. All-Conference selections Logan Paynter and Ivan Sakou scored first-half goals, before first team defender Joe Kerridge put the nail in the coffin early in the second half with his second goal in as many games.
The only meeting between the Bisons and Eagles in postseason play came in 2012 when FGCU edged out the victory 2-1 in two overtimes in Fort Myers.
The contest will air live on ESPN3 with Neil Solondz leading the call. Live stats will also be available for those unable to watch.
The 22nd-ranked Eagles enter the match sporting a 12-3-2 overall record and a 4-1-1 mark in conference play.
FGCU has been tough at home this season with a 6-1-1 mark. The only loss came to the ASUN Champion North Florida. It was the first home regular-season loss for FGCU in nearly eight years, snapping a 29-game unbeaten streak (26-0-3) that dated back to 2008.
The Eagles placed a league-high four players on the All-ASUN First Team, but everything begins with the league’s Player of the Year Albert Ruiz. The junior forward is the program’s all-time leading scorer and currently leads the nation in goals (17), goals per match (1.06), total points (39) and points per game (2.44). He has scored in 11 of 16 games with four multi-goal performances and five assists.
Joining Ruiz up top to form the ASUN’s top scoring duo is Arion Sobers-Assue. Combined the tandem has combined for 28 goals and 12 helpers.
The sophomore leads the ASUN with seven assists and ranks ninth in the nation with 11 goals. He also stands seventh in the country with 1.81 points per game and ninth in total points with 29.
As a team the high-flying Eagles are firing off 15.59 shots per game and pace the nation in total goals (52), goals per game (3.06) and total points (146). They rank second in assists (42) and shots on goal per game (7.53).
Sophomore goalkeeper Sawyer Jackman leads the way in net for the Eagles with a 9-1-1 record and two clean sheets, but has not seen any action in the last three matches. The netminder has allowed 17 goals and pulled in 44 saves while facing 165 shots on the season.
Against the Bisons last week, Jared Brown started in goal. He is 3-2-1 with seven goals allowed and 19 saves in six starts. He faced 16 shots and turned away a career high seven attempts against the Purple and Gold.
- FGCU leads the all-time series with Lipscomb 7-3-1.
- Paynter leads the Bisons with 23 points. That is tied with Garret Pettis’ 2011 total for third most in a single season in school history.
- His 16 career goals move Paynter into third on the all-time scoring leaders chart in Bisons soccer history. Miguel DaSilva (32) is first and Pettis (30) is second.
- Sakou’s goal Thursday was his sixth of the season, the second most on the squad and sixth most in the ASUN. The Bisons are 6-0 this season when he scores.
- Paynter and Sakou are now the ASUN’s second-leading scoring duo at 16 combined goals.
- 11 different players have scored a goal and 13 have recorded an assist for the Bisons this season.
- The Bisons lead the league in goals against average (1.07) and corner kicks (104).
- Lipscomb ranks second in the ASUN in shots (222), goals (29), assists (25), points (83), goals allowed (19), saves (64) and shutouts (6).
- Ivan Alvarado notched his team-leading fourth assist of the season against the Hatters. He now has four helpers in each of his three seasons in Nashville. He is the ASUN’s active career leader with 16. No other player has more than nine.
If the Bisons get the victory they will play in the ASUN Championship game next Saturday, November 12. Depending on how the other side of the bracket plays out, Lipscomb would either travel to Jacksonville to face No. 1 UNF or host No. 4 NJIT/No. 5 Jacksonville in Nashville as the highest remaining seed will play host.
If the Bisons fall to FGCU their season is over.