By the time you read this, there's a chance that the volleyball team has already started their weekend hosting the Golden Eagle Classic, so we'll move right on to the three soccer matches of the weekend. Women's soccer is down in Durham, North Carolina, for the Duke/Nike Classic, where they will play two of the top teams in the country. Meanwhile, back in the Valley, men's soccer will host Western Illinois.
Women's soccer (3-0-1) starts the weekend ranked 12th in the country by the NSCAA and #8 by Soccer America. Maegan Kelly is third in the Big East in assists at 4, and Sofie Schunk leads in the important keeper stats: Goals Against Average (0.00) and Save Percentage (1.000). Men's soccer is one of just five Division 1 programs to start the season 4-0-0. Annoyingly included on this list is division rival Georgetown. In any case, the outstanding start has garnered attention for Coach Bennett's squad. There's five different outlets that produce men's soccer polls and Marquette is ranked anywhere between 18th and 29th on those lists. A win in their one match this weekend will match the best start in program history.
Hit the jump and we'll talk about the opposition for the weekend.
As previously mentioned, women's soccer is in North Carolina for the Duke/Nike Classic. First up this afternoon at 4pm Central is #18/#14 North Carolina (2-1-1). The Tar Heels have allowed just one goal on the season, which was in their opening loss at Portland. Most notably, they ran off two shutout wins over Notre Dame and Connecticut last weekend. I'd give you a breakdown of where UNC's offense is coming from, but their stats page is broken and appears to be missing a game somehow. I can tell you that while senior Adelaide Gay gets the starts and the majority of the time in net, head coach Anson Dorrance isn't afraid to use junior Anna Sieloff as well.
On Sunday afternoon at 12:30pm Central, Marquette's attention will turn to the host of the Duke/Nike Classic. #4/#4 Duke (4-1-0) will play San Diego on Friday night after the conclusion of the Marquette-UNC game. Junior Kim DeCesare leads the Blue Devils in both goals (6) and points (15). Duke has used three different keepers on the season, but senior Tara Campbell has started all five contests while accruing a goals-against average of 0.99 and stopping 73.3% of the shots on goal.
Turning our attention to men's soccer, their opponent on Saturday night will be Western Illinois (2-2). The Leathernecks have had a rather interesting season so far, dropping two home contests without scoring a goal to a school I've never heard of and Central Arkansas, then going on the road and picking up wins at DePaul and Valparaiso. Freshman Austin Gochneaur has been a revelation in the early going, scoring two of WIU's three goals in the last two games. Sophomore Yves Dietrich has played every minute in net so far this season with a goals-against average of 0.75 and a save percentage of 0.850. Dietrich started his collegiate career at UW-Whitewater before transferring to WIU.