By: Akshai Wadhwani
BOSTON, MA – Friday evening will feature a crucial clash between two high-end Patriot League competitors, as BU men’s soccer prepares to take on Loyola Maryland on the road.
The Terriers (3-6-3 overall, 2-1-1 PL) are coming off a decidedly disappointing 0-0 draw with Lafayette this past Saturday. They sit at 1-2-2 on the road overall, having earned their first away win of the season last week with a 1-0 decision over Holy Cross.
Though he remains sidelined by injury for what is now seven games running, junior Matt McDonnell continues to lead his team—and the Patriot League—with six goals; his fellow junior Satchel Cortet follows with seven points off two goals and three assists. Senior goalkeeper Mike Bernardi retains an iron grip on the starting spot in net with a 0.71 goals against average and 0.786 save percentage in Patriot League play.
The Greyhounds (6-3-1 overall, 2-1-1 PL) have yet to win a match at home this season, with a 0-1-1 record at Ridley Athletic Complex. They lead the Patriot League in goals scored (16), shots per game (14), shots on goal per game (5.90), and points per game (4.60)—numbers that have been influenced greatly by the contributions of star forward Brian Saramago.
The junior holds a conference-high 43 shots, 15 points, and 1.50 points per game, with five goals (T-2nd in PL) and five assists (T-1st in PL). Meanwhile, Patriot League Midfielder of the Week Barry Sharifi leads the best of the rest with three goals and two assists, while senior Gabriel Carlsson has scored one and aided three.
Statistics may be overwhelmingly in Loyola’s favor, but BU is still advantageous in the all-time series at 3-2-2. That was trimmed last season in a 2-1 loss at Nickerson Field, in which junior Mana Chavali’s second-half effort was not enough to overcome a two-goal deficit set up by the Greyhounds in the first forty-five.
Kickoff from Baltimore on Friday night is set for 7 p.m.