Bears Hit the Road Again to take on Duke on Friday Night
MACON, Ga. – Coming off an emotional weekend of Atlantic Sun Conference play, the Mercer men's soccer team now shifts its focus towards it match-up with ACC power Duke scheduled for Friday night at 7 p.m.
Mercer (8-6-3) is currently on a season-best five-match unbeaten streak (3-0-2). The unbeaten run is the longest for the Bears since they ripped off a six-match winning streak (5-0-1) back in September of 2010.
Scouting the Opposition
Duke (9-6-2) enters play on Friday night coming off the heels of a 2-2 tie against Elon on November 1. The Blue Devils have been in and out of the national top-25 polls all season and have played a brutal 2011 schedule, justified by their impressive No. 24 ranking in the RPI. Junior striker Andrew Wenger is one of the most prolific offensive players in the nation this season, ranking tied for third in the country with 17 goals in 2011. The Blue Devils will be celebrating senior night on Friday evening, honoring six seniors including midfielder Christopher Tweed-Kent who leads the team with 11 assists.
Last Time Out
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Mercer men's soccer team scored two unanswered goals in the second half to come away with a 2-1 victory over Belmont on Oct. 30 at E.S. Rose Park.
With the win, Mercer (8-6-3, 3-3-2 A-Sun) clinched a spot as the No. 4 seed in the 2011 Atlantic Sun Championship, hosted by ETSU on November 9-13.
The Bruins found the first goal of the game with their first scoring chance of the afternoon, in the 50th minute of play. After a foul resulted in a free kick, sophomore Nico Olsak blasted a shot off the Mercer wall and into the back of the net to give Belmont a 1-0 lead.
The Bears didn't hang their heads long, however, as one of their offensive leaders knotted the game back up just minutes later. Junior Joey Heavner stepped onto a loose ball in the Belmont box and fired a shot past Belmont goalkeeper Lou Manning to tie the game at 1-1.
The Orange and Black kept pressing forward and found a go-ahead goal when they needed it most. Sophomore Ehjayson Henry flicked a pass from his fellow classmate Sean Baumann over the arms of Manning to put the Bears ahead to stay, 2-1, in the 79th minute.
- Duke holds a 4-0 advantage in the all-time series against Mercer. The Blue Devils and Bears last met in 2001, when Duke came away with a 4-1 victory in Durham.
- Junior Joey Heavner was honored as the A-Sun Defensive Player of the Week for the week of October 24-30. The A-Sun Conference Defensive of the Week award is the second of the season for Heavner, who currently ranks 22nd in the country with seven total assists.