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Bobcats Soccer Ready to Storm Nationals

The number-one ranked Bryant & Stratton College men’s soccer team earned a first-round bye in the 2015 USCAA National Tournament thanks to their 11-1 season that ended on an eight-game win streak.

The Bobcats’ lone loss came at the hands of defending national champions, WVU Tech, the team that dispatched BSC in the 2014 national semifinals. WVU is not participating in the postseason this year and BSC steps into the top spot in the bracket as a result. Due to their bye, the Bobcats will wait and see if they face the College of St. Joseph’s (VT) or SUNY Delhi after their first round match on Wednesday night.

While BSC didn’t face the College of St. Joe’s this year, they dispatched Delhi by a score of 4-1 in early October. Zino Zampach and Erickson Alves lead the Bobcats into the tournament as the team’s leading goal scorers with six and five goals, respectively. The numbers are relatively low compared to the national leaders but BSC has employed a balanced attack as 13 different players have tallied this year for the Bobcats.

Kickoff for Thursday’s game against either St. Joe’s or Delhi is 2:00 pm as the Bobcats search to add another National Championship to their trophy case.

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The Lady Bobcats path to the title may prove to be tougher than the men as they have the potential to face the number one overall seed, University of Maine Fort Kent in the second round. Of course, the Bobcats will only have the chance for an upset if they take care of business on Thursday.

BSC will have a chance to avenge their 3-2 loss to Alfred State in their first round matchup against the Pioneers. Adela Racic will be a pivotal player for the Bobcats as her 20 goals ranked fifth overall in the USCAA this year and served as a catalyst for BSC’s four-game win streak to end the year. The loss to Alfred State was due, in part, to an early deficit which saw BSC enter the half trailing 2-1.

Alfred State opened the scoring just 6 minutes into the game and answered BSC’s tying goal in just over two minutes. That lead would grow to 3-1 just five minutes into the second half and BSC only managed one more goal to bring the deficit to 3-2. A quick start for the Lady Bobcats will be a must to ensure they negate Alfred’s quick-strike ability that was so evident in October.

Lurking on the other side of the bracket is SUNY ESF, another team that dispatched the Bobcats this year along with Albany College of Pharmacy Health Sciences, the opponent in two of the highest scoring games BSC played in this year.

BSC must take care of business in the first round, but there is plenty of room for vengeance beyond Thursday’s showdown with Alfred State.


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