Sept. 12, 2013
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s soccer heads up the road for a matchup with Bowling Green at 7 p.m. Friday on Cochrane Field in Bowling Green, Ohio. The Buckeyes enter the meeting with a 2-2-0 record after splitting action at the Hurricane Classic last weekend, while the Falcons enter the weekend with a 1-2-1 ledger.
There is free admission at Cochrane Field for anyone making the trip to Bowling Green. For home viewers, live stats are scheduled to be available, linked from the front page and men’s soccer schedule page of OhioStateBuckeyes.com. There will not be a video stream of the contest.
IN A NUTSHELL
- The Buckeyes (2-2-0) have posted wins over Northern Illinois and SMU, while taking losses to UNC Wilmington and Tulsa. The Wilmington and NIU matches were part of the eighth annual Wolstein Classic, with the other two contests coming at the Hurricane Classic at Tulsa.
- Ohio State’s five goals have been scored by five different players; the same for its five assists.
- Sage Gardner and Christian Soldat lead the team with three points apiece as the only players to tally both a score and an assist.
- Soldat and Zach Mason each earned a spot on the Hurricane Classic all-tournament team after their efforts last weekend.
- Ohio State returns four starters in Gardner, a senior captain, juniors Kenny Cunningham and Zach Dobey and Mason from the 2012 team. John Bluem, who enters his 17th season as head coach of the Buckeyes, welcomes a total of 17 new players to Columbus, including a talented group of nine true freshmen.
- Cunningham is the leading returning scorer from last season with three goals and an assist to his credit as a sophomore.
- In goal, Alex Ivanov has played every minute, and has 29 saves, two shutouts and a goals-against average of 1.44. He earned Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors Sept. 3 after stopping two PKs in the Buckeyes’ 2-0 win over Northern Illinois.
BATTLE OF OHIO
The Buckeyes will take on a total of five in-state opponents during the 2013 season, beginning Friday night vs. BGSU. Following the match against the Falcons, Ohio State has consecutive meetings with Wright State (Sept. 17), Dayton (Sept. 20) and at Akron (Sept. 24). The fifth game, vs. Cleveland State, will break up the Big Ten slate Oct. 27 in Columbus.
SCOUTING THE FALCONS
The Falcons are 1-2-1 through the first two weekends of the season. BGSU opened the regular season with a 5-0 win over Malone (Aug. 30), then battled three-consecutive Top 25 opponents, earning a draw with Michigan to a 1-1before dropping games to Marquette (3-0; Sept. 6) and host Milwaukee (2-0; Sept. 8) at the Panther Invitational. Six BGSU players account for the team’s six goals on the season. Brandon Silva, Ryan Comiskey, Joey D'Agostino, Anthony Grant, Ryan Snashall and Ryan James each have found the back of the net with Comiskey, Grant and James also holding an assist to their credit for a shared team-high three points.
The Buckeyes have won each of the last four meetings with Bowling Green, all shutouts, although the Falcons lead the all-time series, 24-14-2. Ohio State picked up a 2-0 victory in Columbus last year (Oct. 10, 2012) after posting 1-0 wins in each of the previous three matchups. The first win in the stretch came in the Buckeyes' last trip to Cochrane Field, six years ago (Sept. 20, 2007). BGSU's last win in the series was a 3-2, double-overtime decision at home during the 2005 season.
BGSU head coach Eric Nichols is a 2000 graduate of Ohio State. He played one year for the Buckeyes under coach Gary Avedikian in 1990, before returning to school after a brief professional career to earn a bachelor’s degree in political science.
Ohio State returns to Columbus for a pair of home matches next week. The Buckeyes will host Wright State at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17 on Bert L. & Iris S. Wolstein Field at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium before welcoming Dayton for a 7:30 p.m. Friday night matchup. The Raiders are 1-1 on the season and will take on West Virginia in Morgantown Friday night. Ohio State overtook Wright State 2-1 last season.