Nov. 14, 2012
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - Boston College will square off against Northeastern on Thursday night at 7 p.m. at Parsons Field in a first round match of the 2012 Division I Men's Soccer Championship.
BC-NORTHEASTERN MEET IN NCAA FIRST ROUND
Boston College will make the short trip to Brookline on Thursday to face Northeastern in the first round of the 2012 Division I Men's Soccer Championship.
The Eagles received an at-large bid and will be participating in their 12th NCAA Tournament. It is their sixth consecutive appearance.
The Huskies earned an automatic bid after defeating Hofstra in the CAA title game in double overtime.
BC IN THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP
The Eagles are making their 12th appearance in the NCAA Championship. Head coach Ed Kelly has led BC to 11 of those tournament appearances, earning bids in 1990, 2000-02, 2004 and from 2007-12.
Boston College has a 5-9-3 all-time record in NCAA Tournament action. It is 1-2 in penalty kick shootouts.
The Eagles are looking to make their first ever appearance in the College Cup, which will be held at Regions Park in Hoover, Ala., December 7 and 9.
BC reached the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship in 2002 before losing to Creighton. It also advanced to the third round of the tournament in 2009 before falling to Drake.
Last year, BC hosted Rutgers in the second round after receiving a bye and the fourth overall seed. The teams tied, 1-1, and the Scarlet Knights advanced on a penalty kick shootout.
THE SERIES WITH NORTHEASTERN
Boston College has never lost to Northeastern and owns an 11-0-1 all-time record against the Huskies.
The Eagles have outscored NU 23-4 in those 12 matches.
The two sides met in the second round of the NCAA Tournament back in 2002 with BC taking a 2-1 victory at Parsons Field.
The match was played at Parsons because of snowy conditions in the area. The natural grass playing surface at BC's Newton Campus Field was deemed unsuitable, so the venue was changed.
The two teams also met in the regular season in 2004 and 2005, with BC winning both times.
LAST TIME OUT
Boston College and Clemson played to a scoreless draw on November 6 at Historic Riggs Field, but the Tigers won the penalty kick shootout, 3-1, to advance to the semifinals of the ACC Championship.
Following a scoreless 110 minutes, the two sides needed the shootout to determine who advanced in the tournament. Clemson's Ara Amirkhanian and senior Kevin Mejia traded goals in the first round, and TJ Casner scored another for the Tigers in round two. Chris Glodack - who replaced Cody Mizell for the shootout - then saved the Eagles' second attempt to give Clemson a 2-1 edge.
Both sides failed to convert in the third sequence as senior Justin Luthy came up with a big save on Clemson. Amadou Dia gave Clemson its third score in round four, then Glodack saved the Eagles' attempt again to advance the Tigers on to Germantown, Maryland.
Both sides had their chances in the first 45 minutes. Clemson held a 5-3 advantage in shots with both keepers recording a save. The Tigers put together a nice sequence 10 minutes into the half when a couple of passes found Amirkhanian on the end line near the goal. He headed it back towards the middle, but no one was there to put a shot on goal.
Mejia gave BC a chance when he flicked a ball in front of a streaking Derrick Boateng. The freshman beat the last defender and raced towards the ball. Mizell came off his line and met Boateng at the top of the box, and Mizell won the ball to thwart the chance.
BC's best chance came with a little over three minutes left in the half. Boateng passed to junior Ryan Dunn on the right side of the pitch. Dunn had plenty of space to send a cross into the far side of the box. His ball found the head of junior Chris Ager, who redirected towards goal. His ball hit the left post and stayed out of goal, keeping the score tied heading into the break.
The second half saw limited chances for both sides until the 15-minute mark when the game busted wide open. The teams went end-to-end for the rest of the half, setting up chances and taking a combined five shots.
Boston College's best chance came when senior Colin Murphy was causing trouble inside the 18-yard box with 12:35 left in the half. A defender finally forced the ball off his foot, but it went right to sophomore Diego Medina-Mendez. He had space to shoot, but his shot went wide of the post.
Clemson had the two best chances of the night in the first overtime session but could not convert. Dia was left unmarked on the far post during a cross in the box. He headed the ball from point-blank range, but the ball went over the crossbar. Less than two minutes later, Dia threatened again and took a shot on the left side of the box. Luthy came out to make the save, but the ball bounced to an open Savage in the middle. Savage redirected the ball to the goal, but a wall of BC defenders made the save.
Neither team threatened in the second overtime session, forcing the penalty kick shootout.
ON THE ROAD IN THE ACC
Boston College was 2-1-1 this season in conference road contests.
The Eagles started 2-0-1 but lost the regular season finale at No. 3 North Carolina last Thursday, 4-0.
BC was outscoring its opponents 3-1 on the road before that match with all four goals coming in the second half.
All five of the Eagles' ACC goals came in the second half - home or away.
THREE EAGLES EARN ALL-ACC HONORS
Seniors Kyle Bekker and Charlie Rugg, and freshman Derrick Boateng earned 2012 All-ACC honors.
Bekker and Rugg were both named to the first team while Boateng was voted to the All-Freshman team. This marked the second consecutive year that Bekker has been placed on the first team. Rugg became the first Eagle to earn All-ACC First-Team honors in three straight seasons.
Bekker is tied for the team lead with four assists and has scored one goal. Bekker's points have come at critical times in the season as five of the six have come in matches decided by a goal or less. He assisted on Rugg's goal at Virginia Tech in a game that ended in a 1-1 draw. He fed Rugg again with a perfect pass in a 1-0 win at No. 15 Wake Forest and then he scored in overtime on a header to give BC a 1-0 win over Dartmouth. Bekker also assisted on the lone goal of the match in a 1-0 win at Duke. Bekker ranks second all-time at Boston College in assists (22), eighth in points (56) and 10th in goals (17).
Rugg leads the Eagles this year with five goals, 14 points and three game-winning goals. He is also tied with Bekker for the team lead with four assists. Rugg's points have also been crucial for the Eagles, as he provided the goal against the Hokies in a 1-1 tie. He assisted on the game-winning goal in double overtime vs. San Francisco and then scored twice and assisted on another in a 4-2 victory against Rhode Island. Rugg played a part in both goals (goal, assist) in a 2-1 win vs. NC State and then assisted on the lone goal in a 1-1 draw at Harvard. His last goal was the only one scored in a 1-0 win at No. 15 Wake Forest. Rugg was named ACC Co-Player of the Week on and TopDrawerSoccer.com National Player of the Week on October 2. He ranks fifth all-time at BC in goals (28) and points (74).
Boateng has played in 17 matches and started 15 as a freshman. He is second on the team in goals (3) and points (9), and third in assists (3). He had three goals and two assists in a four-match span from September 14-25. He notched an assist vs. Virginia Tech in a 1-1 draw and then scored the game-winning goal against San Francisco with just 11 seconds left. Boateng also had two goals and an assist vs. Rhode Island.
EAGLES IN OVERTIME
Boston College is 2-0-5 in overtime matches this season.
Three of the overtime contests have come in non-conference matches. BC tied at Virginia Tech on September 14 and vs. Clemson on October 13.
The most dramatic game came on September 22 in a 2-1 overtime win vs. San Francisco. Junior Ryan Dunn scored the equalizing goal in the 72nd minute before freshman Derrick Boateng scored the game-winner with 11 seconds left in the second overtime.
BC is 6-2-4 since that win against USF.
The Eagles also tied at Harvard on October 2, 1-1.
Senior Kyle Bekker played the hero vs. Dartmouth when he scored in the 95th minute to lift BC to the win.
Senior Charlie Rugg missed the first three matches of the season with an injury he sustained in the final preseason contest, but he is back and picked up where he left off last year.
Rugg leads the team in goals (5), assists (4) and points (14).
He has missed the last three matches of the season with another injury, though.
Rugg started his first match of the season at Virginia Tech on September 14 and scored the lone goal for the Eagles in a 1-1 draw.
He scored twice and assisted on another goal in the 4-2 win vs. Rhode Island and then played a part in both BC goals in a 2-1 win vs. NC State.
The Roslindale, Mass., product was named TopDrawerSoccer.com national Player of the Week and ACC Co-Player of the Week for his performance in those two matches.
Rugg then scored the only goal of the match in an important 1-0 win at No. 15 Wake Forest on October 6.
He was one of the catalysts of the offense last season, as he led the team with eight goals, and was second on the team with 21 points and five assists. He led the team with five game-winning goals.
He ranks fifth all-time at BC in goals (28) and points (74).
RUGG EARNS MULTIPLE HONORS
Senior Charlie Rugg was named the TopDrawerSoccer.com national Player of the Week and ACC Co-Player of the Week on October 2 for his eight-point performance in two matches.
Rugg scored three of the team's six goals the previous week to lead the Eagles to a 2-0-0 record. He had two goals and an assist in a 4-2 win against Rhode Island then played a part in both goals in a 2-1 win vs. NC State - scoring one and assisting on the other.
The Roslindale, Mass., product played a part in five of the six BC goals in the two matches and scored his three on just six shots. He also tallied the game-winning goal in both contests.
His two goals against URI tied a career high while his five points established a new one. Rugg has scored a point in four-straight matches and has three goals and four assists in that span.
BEKKER BACK FOR FINAL SEASON
Senior Kyle Bekker was the catalyst for the attack all season long last year, leading the team with eight goals, seven assists and 23 points.
Bekker was an All-ACC First Team honoree in 2011 and was also named to the All-South Atlantic Third Team.
The Canadian product ranks second all-time at Boston College in assists (22), ninth in points (56) and 10th in goals (17).
He has one goal and leads the team with four assists this year.
His goal was an important one, as he headed home a cross in the 95th minute vs. Dartmouth to give BC a 1-0 win.
Following a Dartmouth foul on the right side of the pitch, freshman Jason Abbott set up for a free kick. He sent a cross into the near side of the box. Bekker jumped and got a head on it, redirecting it to the back post for the game-winner.
Bekker led Canada to the semifinal stage of the 2012 CONCACAF Men's Olympic Qualifying tournament in March. He started two of the three games in group play and started the semifinal match against Mexico.
Senior Justin Luthy has been a mainstay in goal since his arrival on campus four years ago.
He has started 78 matches in goal the last four seasons and ranks among the all-time greats.
He is the all-time Boston College leader in wins (43), setting the mark at Fairfield September 3 with a 1-0 shutout.
He also ranks first in minutes played (7301), second in shutouts (25) and fifth in saves (295).
Luthy has seven shutouts this season with six coming in the last nine matches. He had a shutout streak of 485 minutes stopped by No. 18 Brown on October 16.
LUTHY TABBED ACC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Senior Justin Luthy was named the ACC Player of the Week on October 9.
Luthy led BC to a 1-0-1 week, including a crucial ACC victory at No. 15 Wake Forest.
He made 11 saves and allowed just one goal in the two matches. He had a .917 save percentage and a 0.45 goals against average.
After stopping three shots in a 1-1 tie at Harvard, Luthy recorded a season-high eight saves in the win against the Demon Deacons. It was the most saves he has recorded in an ACC match since 2009.
All eight of his saves came in the second half with Wake pressuring for the equalizing goal.
Luthy became the second Eagle in a row to earn ACC Player of the Week honors. Senior Charlie Rugg shared the honor the week before with Wake Forest's Luca Giminez.
Freshman Derrick Boateng, better known as Nana, is second on the team in goals (3) and points (9), and third in assists (3).
Boateng had three goals and two assists in a four-match span from September 14-25.
Nana's first collegiate goal came in dramatic fashion against San Francisco on September 22. A Dons turnover gave Boston College a 4-on-3 advantage on the attack with under 30 seconds to go in the match. Senior Charlie Rugg dished to Boateng to his left who dribbled into the box. As the USF keeper came off his line, Boateng lofted a shot over his head and into the far side netting - just inside the post - to give the Eagles the thrilling 2-1 victory.
He followed that up with two goals and an assist in the 4-2 win vs. Rhode Island.
NEWCOMERS MAKING IMPACT
The new faces of Boston College have made quite the impression in 2012.
Local freshman Derrick Boateng is second on the team in goals (3) and points (9), and third in assists (3).
Freshman Jason Abbott made his presence known immediately, scoring a goal and adding an assist in the 2-1 season-opening win at Quinnipiac. He has one goal and three assists.
Abbott and Boateng have combined for 33 starts this season.
Sophomore Matt Wendelken and freshman Dylan Pritchard have a combined 19 starts while freshmen Dan Norris and Zack Rockmore have combined for 10 appearances.
Freshman Alex Kapp started two matches in goal, going 2-0-0 in those
He has allowed just one goal in over 154 minutes and has been credited with six saves.
DUNN GETS ON THE BOARD
Junior Ryan Dunn picked a perfect time to score his first collegiate goal.
The defenseman scored the equalizer in the 72nd minute against San Francisco on September 22 in what would be an eventual 2-1 win in double overtime.
With the Eagles losing 2-1, senior Kyle Bekker delivered a free kick into the box following a USF foul. The ball bounced around for awhile, then freshman Derrick Boateng got a shot off that was blocked. The ball stayed in the box and Dunn finally put it in the back of the net to tie the match.
Boateng would net the game winner with just 11 seconds left in the second overtime.
Dunn has played in 51 matches in his career with 40 starts. He has one goal and two assists.
MEDINA-MENDEZ'S STELLAR FIRST YEAR
Sophomore Diego Medina-Mendez started 17 matches and appeared in all 21 in 2011. He was the only freshman to earn a start last season.
The speedy midfielder tied for the team lead with eight goals and assisted on two others for 18 points - that ranked third on the team.
His four ACC goals led BC and ranked fifth in the conference.
The Lindsay, Calif., product was named to the All-ACC Freshman Team and the ACC All-Tournament Team.
This year, Medina-Mendez recorded a pair of assists - a career high - in the 2-1 win against NC State on September 28.
MEJIA ON THE ATTACK
Senior Kevin Mejia stepped into the starting forward role in the absence of classmate Charlie Rugg early in the season.
He scored a pair of goals in that role, including the only one of the match in a 1-0 win at Fairfield September 3.
Mejia scored again on October 2 when he tallied the equalizer at Harvard in the 31st minute.
Mejia has nine career goals and 22 points. His only other multiple goal season came back in 2009, his freshman year. He had five goals that season.
EAGLES TOP DUKE ON THE ROAD
Senior Stefan Carter scored the only goal of the match in the 71st minute to lead bc to a 1-0 win at Duke on October 19.
It was Carter's second goal of the season. Senior Kyle Bekker was credited with the assist which was his fourth of the year - tied for the team lead. Senior Justin Luthy recorded four saves for his fifth shutout of the season.
The Eagles got a great chance five minutes after the opening whistle. Senior Charlie Rugg was taken down just outside the box and BC was rewarded a free kick. Bekker stood over the ball for the set piece and took a shot around the wall. Duke's James Belshaw had to make a diving save to keep BC off the board.
There were only two other shots on goal in the first half - one for both sides. Riley Wolfe tested Luthy for the first time of the night in the 19th minute, then Belshaw made his second save on a Carter attempt two minutes later.
Duke seemed to control the early going of the second half after junior Chris Ager recorded the first shot on a quick BC corner kick. The Blue Devils had four shots and two corners in a 12-minute span after BC's initial threat.
The Eagles finally broke the scoreless tie in the 71st minute. Bekker controlled the ball on a breakaway and sent a through ball to a streaking Carter in the middle of the pitch. Belshaw came off his line to the top of the box to cut down the angle, but Carter slipped a shot under him to put BC ahead.
The Blue Devils pressured for the equalizer as they took six of the final eight shots, but they could not force overtime. With 15 minutes left, Jonathan Aguirre handled the ball inside the right side of the box and dished to Sean Davis. Luthy sprinted off his line to deflect the shot wide.
Duke had another solid attempt when it was given a free kick near midfield with nine minutes remaining. A pass was lobbed into the box that Sebastien Ibeagha headed towards goal. Luthy backpedaled and was able to get to the shot in time to punch it over the crossbar and keep BC's lead safe.
BC WINS AT WAKE FOREST
Senior Charlie Rugg scored the match's only goal in the 57th minute as Boston College won at No. 15 Wake Forest, 1-0, on October 6 in front of 1,514 fans at Spry Stadium.
Senior Kyle Bekker and freshman Dylan Pritchard got the assists on the score. Senior Justin Luthy was credited with a season-high eight saves in goal - the most since he had 12 vs. Rhode Island on September 23, 2011. All of his saves came in the second half.
The first half started with Wake Forest controlling much of the action, but the Eagles took control later in the period. The Demon Deacons got four of the match's first five shots in the initial 20 minutes, but the Eagles took the next five shots to close the half.
BC's best chance may have come on its first shot, when Bekker sent a free kick into the box. Freshman Derrick Boateng handled the ball amidst a flurry of defenders, but found some open space for a shot that was eventually blocked.
Rugg battled for a quality chance at the 21:00 mark and nearly put BC on top. He was fighting for a loose ball at the top of the box with a defender and the goalkeeper who came off his line. He won the ball, turned and took a shot, but a Wake Forest defender was there to keep the ball out of the net.
The two sides went into halftime scoreless, but the Demon Deacons made a push 10 minutes into the second half and got their first two shots on goal of the day. Luciano Delbono made a nice pass to Michael Gamble on the left side of the box. Gamble fired a shot right at Luthy who made his first save of the match. He was tested again seconds later by Chris Duvall but notched another stop.
BC responded immediately and got the match's only goal to take a 1-0 lead in the 57th minute. Pritchard handled the ball in the middle of the attacking zone. He dished off to Bekker to his right and Bekker served a perfect pass to a streaking Rugg in the box. Rugg chipped a shot over the oncoming keeper to give the Eagles the lead.
Wake Forest spent the rest of the match on the offensive and recorded eight shots in the final 33 minutes, but couldn't get the equalizer.
EAGLES GET FIRST ACC WIN
Senior Charlie Rugg recorded a goal and an assist to lead BC to a 2-1 win against NC State on September 28 at Newton Campus Field.
Senior Stefan Carter scored his first goal of the season and sophomore Diego Medina-Mendez assisted on both scores.
Boston College held a 13-6 advantage in shots and a 13-5 lead in corner kicks.
After a scoreless first half, the Boston College offense controlled the pace in the second and it finally paid off in the 62nd minute. On the sixth corner kick of the half, senior Kyle Bekker stood over the ball and sent a bender into the box. Senior Charlie Rugg took a shot on goal that was saved and the ball bounced left. Medina-Mendez got a touch on it, but Carter finally put it home amidst a crowd to give BC the lead.
Less than four minutes later, Medina-Mendez used his speed to come up with a surprising steal between two Wolfpack players. He continued on to make a great run down the right side of the pitch, then sent a low cross into the box. Rugg was streaking down the middle and redirected the ball into the back of the net for what proved to be the game-winner.
BC had a couple of more chances to score, but it was NC State who put the pressure on in the end. With the ball in the midfield, Moss Jackson-Atogi decided to send a deep ball into the other half of the field. Monbo Bokar made a run at the ball and got ahead of the defense, then beat senior Justin Luthy to cut the deficit in half in the 86th minute, 2-1. NC State would threaten but could not get any further, and BC hung on for its first ACC win.
TOUGH AT HOME
BC has been hard to beat at the Newton Campus Field over the last few seasons.
The Eagles went 6-0-3 at home in 2010 and were 7-2-1 last year.
Boston College is 24-7-5 in its last 36 regular season home games dating back to 2009 and is 25-8-6 overall in Newton since 2009.
BC has dominated at home during Atlantic Coast Conference contests since joining the league in 2005.
After a disappointing start in 2005 when BC went 0-3-1 at home in conference matches, the Eagles are 18-5-6 since 2006.
Boston College's last loss came at the hands of Brown on October 16.
EAGLES RANKED NO. 14 IN NSCAA PRESEASON POLL
Boston College was ranked No. 14 in the country in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Continental Tire preseason rankings, announced August 7.
BC and head coach Ed Kelly returned 14 lettermen from the 2011 squad that earned the No. 4 national seed in the NCAA Tournament. Four players who earned All-ACC honors return, including Chris Ager (second team), Kyle Bekker (first team), Diego Medina-Mendez (freshman team) and Charlie Rugg (first team).
The Eagles finished the 2011 season at 14-6-1 and went 4-4-0 in the ACC. After receiving a first-round bye in the NCAA Tournament, BC and Rutgers tied in the second round, but the Scarlet Knights advanced in the penalty kick shootout.
Boston College also reached the final of the 2011 ACC Championship - its second appearance in the title game. It marked the fifth-consecutive time that BC reached the semifinals of the tournament - the only ACC team to accomplish that feat in the last five seasons.
BC PREDICTED TO FINISH FOURTH IN ACC
The Eagles were selected to finish fourth in the 2012 ACC preseason poll, as voted on by the league's nine head coaches.
No. 9 Maryland was picked as the ACC's preseason favorite, getting three first place votes and 72 points. No. 1 North Carolina, the defending national and conference champion, grabbed four first place votes but totaled 71 points. Wake Forest came in third with 60 points and had the other two first place votes. Boston College garnered 52 points.
The rest of the preseason poll in order was: Virginia (49 points), Duke (42), Clemson (30), NC State (18) and Virginia Tech (11).