October 26, 2010

Spartans Set for Season Finale

Game Notes

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The USC Upstate men's soccer team will host ETSU on Wednesday night in the season finale.  Prior to the match, Upstate will be honoring its two graduating seniors, Maurice Beggs and Erkan Yildirim.  Fans are encouraged to arrive early to ensure they are on hand for the pre-match ceremony honoring the Spartan pair.

Wednesday's match is also First Responders Appreciation Night as all First Responders will be admitted free when they show their respective identification badge.  Also, friends and family members of our First Responders will receive the group rate of $2 per person which is a savings of $3 per ticket. We hope you can join in the celebration and recognition of those who keep our community safe.

Free food will also be provided at the event and is courtesy of Firehouse Subs.  For more information please contact Mason Glick, Director of Marketing, Promotions and Special Events, at 864-503-5893 or mglick@uscupstate.edu.

Scouting the Bucs

ETSU enters Wednesday's match riding a four-match win streak, including three straight 1-0 victories from Oct. 15 through Oct. 22 (Jacksonville, North Florida and at Belmont).  In their last match, the Bucs won on the road at Lipscomb, 2-1, in overtime.  Following Wednesday's match, ETSU will return to Johnson City as they host #3 North Carolina on Friday night. 

ETSU has a balanced attack as six different players have scored two or more goals this season.  Guilherme Reis and David Geno are tied for the team lead in assists (4) and points (10).  The Bucs have used a pair of keepers this season, with Ronnie Hreha playing 892 minutes while James Holt has played 513 minutes.  Hreha has made 19 saves while allowing nine goals (0.91 GAA) en route to an 8-2-0 record with four shutouts.  Meanwhile, Holt has made 16 saves and allowed six goals (1.05 GAA) and owns a 3-2-0 record with one shutout.

Fans not in attendance can watch the action live online at ASun.TV by visiting the service's web site, www.asun.tv, and clicking on the USC Upstate tab. Fans can also receive live statistical updates by visiting the official Upstate Athletics Web site at www.upstatespartans.com.

Looking Back at Lipscomb and Belmont

Last weekend, the Spartans made their final road trip of the 2010 regular season as they played two matches in the Music City.  The Spartans fell to Lipscomb, 1-0, on Friday night as the Bisons tallied the game-winning goal in the 87th-minute.  On Sunday, Maurice Beggs tallied his fourth goal of the season and 11th of his career, but it was not enough as Belmont claimed a 4-1 victory behind three second-half goals.

Samurai Shutdown

Sporting a new gameday hairstyle in 2010, similar to that of a samurai warrior, senior goalkeeper Jason McCabe has been a force in goal for the Spartans.  McCabe earned Atlantic Sun Conference Defensive Player of the Week honors (Sept. 28) as he led Upstate to a 1-0-1 record in the final non-conference matches of the season.  In the 1-0 victory over UNC Ashville on Sept. 22, McCabe made five saves as the Spartans picked up their first shutout victory since the move to Division I in 2007.  The Irmo, S.C, product followed with another outstanding outing on Sept. 25 as he held the Furman Paladins scoreless for 110 minutes as the two teams battled to a 0-0 draw.  For the week, McCabe finished with 200 minutes of shutout soccer behind seven saves en route to a 1-0-1 record.

Deliver with Care: Timo's Helpers

Junior midfielder Timo Foerster recorded an assist on all three goals the Spartans scored in the season opener at Georgia Southern (9/1).  Hakeem King, John Kadane and John Collins tallied the three Spartan goals against the Eagles.  His three assists are tied for the single-match high in the A-Sun this season.  Foerster recorded his fourth assist of 2010 in the match against Presbyterian (9/7) as he assisted on Hakeem King's goal in the 30th-minute.  He tied a single-season high after tallying his fifth assist of the season in the match against North Florida, as he assisted on Maurice Beggs' goal in the 76th-mintue.  In the A-Sun, he is tied for seventh in assists and is tied for ninth in assists per match (0.36). 

Spartans in the A-Sun

Aside from Timo Foerster's pair of top-10 rankings in the A-Sun, Jason McCabe also finds his name in the top-10 of the A-Sun in several categories. McCabe ranks second in the conference in saves (61), fourth in saves per match (4.07) and seventh in shutouts (2).  He is also, ranked ninth in both GAA (1.70) and save percentage (.701), while ranking 10th in shutouts per match (0.13).

The Real McCoys

After missing the entire 2009 campaign due to injury, twin brothers Chad and Chris McCoy made their return to the field in the match at Georgia Southern (9/1).  Chris, who had surgery on each hip in 2008, has started 13 games as a defender for Coach Hooks this season.  Meanwhile, Chad had ankle surgery during the spring of 2009 and missed the '09 season due to his rehabilitation.  Chad, a forward, has seen action against Georgia Southern, Presbyterian, UNC Asheville, Mercer and Belmont.

Hear Ye! Hear Ye!: 2010 Spartan Honor Roll

Timo Foerster earned the first Sprint Spartan of the Week honor on Aug. 23 after scoring a goal and recording an assist in the preseason exhibition match against Spartanburg Methodist College (8/19).  Hakeem King collected the second consecutive honor on Aug. 30 after scoring the game-winning goal in the 2-1 exhibition victory over Clemson (8/24).  Jason McCabe became the third men's soccer player to earn the honor on Sept. 13 after helping lead the Spartans to a 1-1 draw against Presbyterian College (9/7).  McCabe earned his second Sprint Spartan of the Week award on Sept. 27 after earning A-Sun Defensive Player of the Week honors (9/27) behind 200 minutes of shutout soccer against UNC Asheville (W, 1-0) and Furman (T, 0-0, 2OT).  Freshman Michael Rankin-Byrne earned Sprint Spartan of the Week honors (10/11), after notching his first collegiate goal in the 89th-minute at Stetson and nearly netted the game winner in the 103rd-minute.

Upstate Men's Soccer Fully Eligible

While Upstate men's soccer is just in its fourth year of competing on the NCAA Division I level, it is became fully eligible for postseason A-Sun and NCAA tournament play in 2009. Upstate, upon declaring its intention to move to D-I membership, tapped the men's soccer and softball teams as fast-track sports into NCAA Division I. Upstate's remaining 15 sports will become eligible beginning with the 2011-12 academic year.

Spartans Strong At Home

Since moving into County University Soccer Stadium, the Upstate men's soccer program has been tough to beat. Actually, since the inception of the program in 1980, the Spartans have been stout on the Spartanburg campus.  Upstate is 59-24-7 at the friendly confines of County University Soccer Stadium for a winning percentage of .694. Overall, Upstate is 228-58-17 at home for a .780 winning percentage in Spartanburg. Upstate played its first season in the quad behind the Administrative Building prior to moving to historic Rifle Field in 1981. The Spartans (then, the Rifles) tallied a 162-30-10 record for a .802 winning percentage at Rifle Field.

Spartan Soccer - A Story of Success

While the USC Upstate Athletics Department has had a storied history of success throughout its existence, the men's soccer program has achieved success on a more consistent level than any other program at the University. Upstate men's soccer finished third in the NAIA National Tournament three straight years from 1983-85 and made 10 NCAA Tournament appearances in 16 years in the NCAA Division II. The Spartans claimed seven regular season Peach Belt Conference championships, nine Peach Belt Conference Tournament titles, and advanced to the championship game of the league tournament 14 times in 16 years.

This Day in History

On today's game date, Oct. 27, these notable events occurred: The first subway cars were placed in operation, forming the New York City subway system (1904)... The 'mighty' New York Mets became world champs of baseball, as they beat Boston's 'hard-luck' Red Sox in game seven of the World Series, 8-5 (1986)... The U.S. released a redesigned $50 bill. The new notes incorporated features to protect against counterfeiting and make U.S. currency more easily identifiable for people with low vision. The Series 1996 $50 note followed the introduction in March 1996 of the redesigned $100 note as part of a program to maintain the security of U.S. currency (1997)... Chart toppers include: "Because of You" by Tony Bennett (1951) and "All Night Long (All Night)" by Lionel Richie (1983)... Notable birthdays include: Actor John Cleese (1939) and country music singer Lee Greenwood (1943)

On this day in Spartan history (Oct. 27), the men's soccer team downed West Virginia Wesleyan, 1-0, as part of a nine match win streak, including seven consecutive shutout victories.  The Spartans finished the season 17-3-1 and it was the first year of play in NCAA Division II (Peach Belt Conference) (1991).