Men's Soccer Set To Begin 2013 Season This Weekend
Aug 29, 2013
CINCINNATI - The No. 22 Xavier men's soccer team will kick off the 2013 campaign this weekend by facing a pair of solid opponents at College of Charleston's Nike/Aaron Olitsky Memorial Classic at Patriots Point in Mt. Pleasant, S.C.
Match No. 1: No. 22 Xavier (0-0-0) vs. Furman (0-0-0)
The Musketeers, who were recently ranked No. 25 in the Soccer America Preseason Top 25 (Aug. 28), open the 2013 season on Friday (5 p.m.) with a matchup with Furman in the tournament opener. The Paladins return seven starters from a 2012 squad that posted a 12-4-3 overall record and went 4-2-1 in Southern Conference play. Furman was tabbed as the preseason favorite in the seven-team SoCon and are led by midfielders Martin Ontiveros and Michael Gandier, who joined sophomore forward Tyler Peoples on the 2013 preseason All-SoCon squad.
XU wraps up tournament play on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. against tournament host College of Charleston. The Cougars, who turned in an 8-10-1 overall record (4-2-1 SoCon) last season, will compete in the Colonial Athletic Association for the first time in 2013. C of C finished third in the Southern Conference last fall before seeing their season end in the quarterfinals of the league tournament. Led by senior goalkeeper Kees Heemskerk (1.29 GAA, 74 saves, five shutouts), a preseason All-CAA honoree, the Cougars defeated UCF (Aug. 18) and East Tennessee State (Aug. 24) in their two exhibition contests.
Xavier is coming off a banner season (14-3-5 overall), which included the program's first NCAA Tournament at-large bid, tourney victory and third-straight appearance into the 48-team field. Additionally, the Musketeers posted a program-record 14 victories and set new marks for assists and total points. XU's final loss of the season came against Indiana, the eventual 2012 national champion.