Nov. 1, 2011
The University of Michigan men's soccer team (5-12-1, 1-4 Big Ten) will host the Northwestern Wildcats on Saturday evening (Nov. 5, 5 p.m.) from U-M Soccer Stadium. The day will also honor the four Michigan seniors, Jarrett Kerr, Adam Shaw, Eric Leifland and Tim Bergsma.
Scouting Northwestern -- The Wildcats are the lone undefeated team in Big Ten play this season, as the squad holds a 3-0-2 mark in conference action and a 9-4-4 overall record. Northwestern is currently riding an eight-match unbeaten streak as the last defeat came on Sept. 29 by a 4-0 count against DePaul in Chicago. Most recently on Sunday (Oct. 30), the Wildcats battled to a 2-2 draw against No. 10 Indiana at home. The Wildcats are 7-1 in Evanston this season but are 2-3 in matches away from home.
As a team, Northwestern is second in the conference in points (83), third in goals (26) and second in assists with 31.
Oliver Kupe leads the team in goals with seven and ranks No. 3 in the Big Ten. Reed Losse leads the team in shots with 38 on the season, averaging 2.24 attempts per match, which is good for fourth in the conference. Three Wildcats players rank in the top 10 of the conference in points, as Kupe carries 15. Lepe Seetane has five goals and three helpers for 13 points to rank sixth in the Big Ten, while Kyle Schickel has three goals and six assists, which rank second in the conference, for 12 points.
Tyler Miller has been the man of choice in goal for Northwestern, as he allowed 12 goals in 15 games for a 0.76 goals-against average, ranking him second in the conference. His eight clean sheets rank No. 2 conference.
Michigan vs. Northwestern -- Saturday's match signifies the 14th meeting all-time between the Wildcats and the Wolverines. U-M holds a 9-4-1 overall record and has won the last three matchups by an 8-3 margin. The 2008 matchup saw the Wolverines upset the Wildcats 3-1 in Evanston in 2008 when NU was the No. 2 team in the country, and the Wolverines dropped then-No. 12 Northwestern 1-0 in Ann Arbor in 2009. Last season, the U-M used goals from Justin Meram, Soony Saad, Alex Wood and Hamoody Saad to knock off Northwestern 4-2 on Nov. 6, 2010, in Ann Arbor.
Michigan to Host 2011 Big Ten Tournament -- The men's soccer program will play host to the 2011 Big Ten Men's Soccer Tournamennt at the U-M Soccer Stadium. The tournament runs from Wednesday, Nov. 9, through Sunday, Nov. 13. The first round will be played Wednesday and the semifinals will be contested on Friday, Nov. 11. The championship game will be held on Sunday, Nov. 13. Michigan will be the No. 6 seed and play the 6:30 p.m. first-round game on Wednesday, Nov. 9. [ Big Ten Tournament Central ]
U-M Drops Yet Another Close Match -- The 1-0 defeat against Michigan State on Sunday (Oct. 30) marks the 10th time this season the Wolverines have been defeated by one goal. Additionally, the scoreline marks the third time this season that the Wolverines have been shut out. The defeat against the Spartan's also relinquished the Big Bear Trophy, given to the winner of the annual Michigan-Michigan State battle.
Oh Brother, Brother, Brother -- The Michigan State match also marked what was believed to be the first time in Big Ten history that two brothers played each other from opposite schools. Junior Latif Alashe squared off his brother, Fatai, who is a freshman midfielder for the Spartans. Although Fatai got the better of Latif in the final outcome, Latif had two shots to Fatai's one shot.
Alashe Propels U-M to Upset of No. 4 Akron -- Alashe gave U-M its signature victory of the year on Oct. 18 at U-M Soccer Stadium, sending the Wolverines past the No. 4 Zips in the first overtime after a feed from Noble Sullivan from 14 yards out. Alashe then chipped Akron goalkeeper David Meves to send U-M to the victory in a rematch of last season's College Cup semifinal match. The win snapped a four-game losing streak to the Zips, as the latest defeat came in 2007 by a 2-1 count.
Extra Sessions Become Familiar -- The extra-time match against Akron was the sixth of the season for U-M, which now holds a 2-3-1 mark in overtime. Noble Sullivan netted the extra-time winner against Oakland on Oct. 12, while Latif Alashe joined the fraternity with his game-winner against Akron.
Rickard Enters Goal Column Against Aztecs -- Freshman Matthew Rickard scored his first career goal in the 2-1 defeat at San Diego State (Oct. 23) on an assist from Fabio Villas Boas Pereira. Rickard earned the tally in the 78th minute of action off a Pereira free kick from 25 yards out, as he deflected the shot into the top-right corner of the Aztec goal for U-M's lone score of the contest. The score comes after contributing two assists this season, coming on a Tyler Arnone goal against Indiana and Ezekiel Harris' game-winner at Penn State. Rickard has played in all 17 contests with six shots on goal and 24 total shots.
Arnone Scores Second Career Goal -- Freshman midfielder/forward Tyler Arnone scored the team's lone goal against Indiana, blistering a shot from 18 yards out to the lower left, giving U-M a 1-0 halftime lead. Arnone scored his only other goal of the season at Detroit. He has started all 15 games in the midfield for the Wolverines, registering 26 total shots and six on net.
Opare Heads in a Pair of Goals -- Junior defender Kofi Opare tallied a pair of header goals in the past six games. Opare headed in a corner kick against Oakland and registered his first goal of the season against Wisconsin on Oct. 9. He headed a corner kick off the Badgers goalkeeper and in the goal. Opare assisted on Tyler Arnone's goal against Indiana and has five points on the season; all in the past three games. He has three career goals, with only previous tally coming as a freshman against Wright State (Sept. 11, 2009). Opare has six shots on goal and 19 total shots this season.
Sullivan Scores First Career Goal -- Noble Sullivan scored the game-winning goal in double overtime against Oakland University. He tallied his first career goal in the 104th minute of play against the Grizzlies, pushing home the winner on a deflection. Sullivan has eight shots on goal and 14 total shots this season.
Alashe Pushes Consecutive Starts Streak to 60 Games -- Latif Alashe heads into this week's action with the team's longest active streak of consecutive starts. Alashe has started a team-best 61 straight games, every contest in his three-year career. He contributed an assist on Sullivan's game-winning goal at Oakland, and has seven points on the season (2 goals, 3 assists). Alashe scored his first goal of the campaign against Notre Dame on Sept. 16 and his second against Akron on Oct. 18.
Harris Tallies Goals -- Ezekiel Harris is the team's third-leading scorer with seven points this season. In addition to his goals against PSU and OSU, Harris notched the tying goal against Georgetown on Sept. 11. He picked up his first assist of the season on David Yang's goal against Western Michigan on Oct. 5. Harris has tallied a point in three of his past six games played. Overall, he has 8 shots on goal and 14 total shots this season.
Pereira Tops Team in Points, Scoring -- Sophomore Fabio Villas Boas Pereira leads the Wolverines in points and goals this season. Pereira has 13 points on four goals with five assists. He has tallied one goal in Big Ten play, scoring on a left-footed shot from five yards out at Ohio State on Sept. 25. Pereira is tied for seventh in points, tied for eighth in goals and is tied for seventh in assists. He has started 17 of the 18 games this season.
Pereira Paces Big Ten in Shots -- Fabio Villas Boas Pereira now leads the Big Ten in shots, taking more than any other player in the conference this season. Pereira has 62 shots in 18 contests. He also is second in the league with an average of 3.44 shots per contest.
Grinwis Surpasses 50 Save Plateau -- Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Adam Grinwis has started between the posts in 17 of the 18 games for the Wolverines this season. Grinwis has 54 saves on the year, including a career-best eight stops at Penn State on Oct. 1 and against Marquette on Sept. 18. He is fourth in the Big Ten with 54 saves this season and carries a 1.60 goals-against average.
Lussiez Tied for Team Lead in Goals -- Sophomore Etienne Lussiez enters this week's action second on the team in points this season. Lussiez is tied for the team lead with four goals and has contributed one assist for nine points on the year. He tallied the team's first goal at No. 19 Penn State on Oct. 1 and scored a second-half hat trick at Detroit on Sept. 14. Lussiez assisted on the team's only goal at No. 16 Notre Dame on Sept. 16.
Youth Movement -- So far this season, 10 Wolverines have made their collegiate debuts: Tyler Arnone, Gabe Grinstein, Adam Grinwis, Alex Landschulz, Tyler Leppek, Nick Lewin, Etienne Lussiez, Matthew Rickard, Luca Schioppa and TJ VanSlooten.
Wed-Sun., Nov. 9-13 -- host Big Ten Tournament (U-M Soccer Stadium)