FOUR CAA TEAMS EARN NCAA TOURNAMENT BERTHS: For just the second time in conference history, four CAA teams earned berths in the NCAA Men’s Soccer Championship. CAA champion Delaware was joined by at-large picks Georgia State, James Madison and Old Dominion. The only other time four CAA teams were chosen for the 48-team field was 2006 when George Mason, Hofstra, ODU and Towson made it.
SELECT COMPANY: The CAA ranked third among all conferences with four teams in the NCAA field. The Big East has seven teams in the tournament, followed by the ACC with six and the CAA and Conference USA with four.
THREE CAA TEAMS LISTED IN NATIONAL POLLS: Three CAA teams are included in national men’s soccer polls this week. James Madison is ranked #20 by College Soccer News, #21 by TopDrawerSoccer and #24 by Soccer America. Old Dominion is ranked #17 by College Soccer News, #21 by the NSCAA and #27 by TopDrawerSoccer. Delaware is ranked #23 by Soccer America and #43 in the TopDrawer poll.
CAA DOMINATES REGIONAL RANKINGS: Five CAA teams were among the top 10 in the South Atlantic region rankings released by the NSCAA on Nov. 15. Old Dominion was ranked #3 in the region, Delaware was #5, James Madison was #6, Georgia State was #8 and William & Mary was #9. Northeastern was among others receiving votes.
SEVEN CAA TEAMS IN TOP 61 OF NCAA RPI: Seven CAA teams were ranked among the top 61 in the nation in the latest NCAA RPI rankings released on Nov. 15. James Madison led the list of CAA teams at #13, Old Dominion was #16, William & Mary was #31, Georgia State was #36, Delaware was #38, VCU was #59 and Northeastern was #61.
GREAT DEFENSE, CLOSE GAMES IN CAA PLAY: The CAA maintained its tradition of close, competitive games in league play. Of the 66 conference contests played this season, 44 were decided by one goal or less. There was also outstanding defense throughout the conference as shutouts were recorded in 34 of the 66 games.
DELAWARE CAPTURES FIRST CAA CHAMPIONSHIP: Fourth-seeded Delaware rallied for a 2-1 victory over #2 Old Dominion to win its first CAA men’s soccer championship. The Monarchs took a 1-0 lead in the 19th minute when Jordan LeBlanc converted a penalty kick after teammate Yannick Smith was taken down in the box. The Blue Hens drew even in the 34th minute as Vincent Mediate controlled the rebound from his own shot and tucked it inside the left post. UD scored the game-winner on an own goal in the 65th minute. Mediate sent a cross into the middle of the box that was intended for Mark Garritty, but an attempted clear off the head of ODU defender Drew Smith went into the net. UD goalkeeper Kris Devaux made seven saves to protect the victory. It was the Blue Hens’ first conference tournament title in school history.
UD’S MEDIATE NAMED TOURNAMENT MOP: Delaware sophomore Vincent Mediate, who scored a goal in the Blue Hens’ championship game victory over ODU, was selected as the Most Outstanding Performer of the CAA Men’s Soccer Championship. He was joined on the all-tournament team by UD’s Kris Devaux, John Dineen and Darren O’Connor. Making the squad from ODU were Jason Gaylord, Tim Hopkinson and Tommy Webb. Rounding out the team were Georgia State’s Chris Locandro and Stephen McGill and James Madison’s Christian McLaughlin and Paul Wyatt.
FRIMPONG HEADLINES ALL-CAA TEAM: Delaware senior forward Evans Frimpong, who was tied for second in the CAA with 11 goals and 27 points during the regular season, became the first Blue Hen to earn CAA men’s soccer Player of the Year honors. Frimpong’s 27 points were the most by a UD player since 1982. Also earning major awards from the conference were Hofstra’s Shaun Foster, who was named Defender of the Year for the second straight season, Delaware forward Roberto Gimenez, who was named Rookie of the Year, and James Madison’s Tom Martin, who was honored as the CAA Coach of the Year for the fifth time.
ODU’S DAWSON REACHES 300 WINS: Old Dominion head coach Alan Dawson won the 300th game of his career when the second-seeded Monarchs defeated #6 Georgia State in the semifinals of the CAA Men’s Soccer Championship.
QUICK LOOK AT CAA TEAMS IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT:
Delaware: Making its third NCAA Tournament appearance, but first since 1970. Set a school record for wins (12) this season and had endured 14 straight losing seasons before this year. Advanced on penalty kicks over Northeastern in the CAA quarterfinals and James Madison in the semifinals before beating ODU 2-1 in the title game. It was UD’s first conference tournament title in school history (85 years). Led offensively by forwards Evans Frimpong (12g, 5a) and Roberto Gimenez (10g, 7a). Goalkeeper Kris Devaux has a 1.23 GAA with five shutouts.
Georgia State: Making its third NCAA Tournament appearance, but previous two trips (1997, 2000) were in play-in games where it lost. 13 wins this season are the most since 1986. Earned a berth in the CAA Tournament for the first time and beat William & Mary 2-1 in the quarterfinals before losing 5-3 to Old Dominion in the semifinals. Top offensive performers are Evan Scott (8g, 3a) and Ayokunle Lumpkin (5g, 2a). Defense anchored by Chris Locandro tied a school record with nine shutouts. Goalkeeper Vincent Foermer has a 1.17 GAA with five shutouts.
James Madison: Making its ninth NCAA Tournament appearance since 1992, but first since 2005. Advanced to the quarterfinals in 1995. Was undefeated at home (9-0-1) this season. Captured the CAA regular-season title for the first time since 2000. Led offensively by Patrick Innes (13g, 2a) and Paul Wyatt (6g, 3a). Goalkeeper Justin Epperson has a 1.19 GAA with a league-best eight shutouts. Tied Delaware 2-2 in the semifinals of the CAA Tournament but was eliminated 5-4 on PK’s.
Old Dominion: Making its eighth NCAA Tournament appearance in the past 10 years and 10th overall. Reached the third round in 2006 and 2007. Ranks second in the nation in scoring (2.67 goals per game). Finished second in the CAA regular-season standings. Beat Georgia State 5-3 in the semifinals before falling 2-1 to Delaware in the finals. Feature the CAA’s leading scorer in Yannick Smith (16g, 2a) along with Tim Hopkinson (10g, 8a) and Gideon Asante (7g, 9a). Goalkeeper Victor Francoz has a 1.38 GAA with five shutouts.