OMAHA, Neb. – The Creighton men’s soccer team will host Seattle University in an NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship First Round match on Thursday at 7 p.m. CT inside Morrison Stadium.
Creighton (9-8-2), who earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the 21st time in 22 seasons, battles Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Champion Seattle (10-8-4) in a first-round contest of the 48-team tournament. The winner of Thursday's match will travel to No. 2 seed Washington in Seattle for an NCAA Second Round match on Sunday at 7 p.m. CT.
The Jays came into Selection Monday at No. 29 nationally in the selection RPI released by the NCAA this week. The Bluejays’ at-large selection is their first since 2010 after CU claimed Missouri Valley Conference Tournament titles resulting in automatic bids in each of its final two seasons in the league. Seattle U is at No. 123 while Washington stands at No. 2 in the latest RPI.
The Bluejays, 7-1-1 at home this season, are 11-1-0 all-time in NCAA Tournament matches played at Morrison Stadium. CU owns a 2-4-2 record against fellow 2013 NCAA Tourney teams. The Jays, with a 4-6 record over their last 10 matches, played the sixth-toughest schedule in the nation as of a Nov. 17 NCAA report. Creighton compiled a 4-5-2 mark against Top 50 RPI teams this season and did not play a match against a single team with an RPI below 127.
The Jays were one of five BIG EAST squads to make the 2013 NCAA field joining No. 6 seed Georgetown, No. 9 seed Marquette, Providence and St. John’s. Creighton finished its inaugural season in the BIG EAST at 4-4-1 in conference contests and as the fifth seed in the BIG EAST Men’s Soccer Championship. CU fell 2-1 at No. 4 seed Providence on Nov. 12 in a BIG EAST Quarterfinal match last time out.
After competing in back-to-back NCAA College Cups, Creighton is now 28-17-6 overall in the NCAA Tournament all-time. The Bluejays have advanced to at least the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals in six of their last 10 appearances. The Jays have made five total NCAA College Cup appearances (1996, 2000, 2002, 2011 and 2012).
Elmar Bolowich is the head coach of the Bluejays. He has guided his teams to five consecutive NCAA College Cup appearances (Creighton – 2012, 2011 and North Carolina - 2010, 2009, 2008) and won a national title with the Tar Heels in 2001. This will be Bolowich's 18th NCAA Tournament appearance as a head coach.
Seattle claimed an automatic NCAA tournament bid by winning the WAC Tournament championship game over San Jose State 2-1 on Sunday in Colorado Springs, Colo. The Redhawks also claimed the regular-season WAC crown with a 7-0-3 record. Seattle is one of two squads making their NCAA tournament debut this season; Quinnipiac is the other. Creighton has never faced Seattle in men’s soccer competition. CU sophomore Brendan Hines-Ike’s brother, Ian, is a midfielder for the Redhawks.
11/12: Lost 2-1 at Providence^
^BIG EAST Men’s Soccer Championship Quarterfinal
11/21: vs. Seattle U, 7 p.m. CT – Morrison Stadium#
#NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship First Round
What’s at Stake
· CU looks to open NCAA Tourney play with a win for a sixth consecutive appearance
· Seattle U seeks its first NCAA Tournament victory in its postseason debut.
Following the Jays
Fans can follow all of the action this Thursday by clicking on the live stats and video links at GoCreighton.com or follow @GoCreighton on Twitter. A FREE live video stream will be available to the general public.
Scouting the Creighton Bluejays (9-8-2, 4-4-1 BIG EAST)
Creighton earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the 21st time in 22 seasons when the NCAA announced the 48-team selections on Monday. CU hosts Seattle U in an NCAA First Round match on Thursday night. The winner of Thursday’s contest will travel to Seattle to face No. 2 seed Washington on Sunday at 7 p.m. CT.
CU, 7-1-1 at home this season, is 11-1-0 all-time in NCAA Tournament matches played at Morrison Stadium. CU owns a 2-4-2 record against fellow NCAA Tourney teams this season.
The Jays were one of five BIG EAST squads to make the 2013 NCAA field joining No. 6 seed Georgetown, No. 9 seed Marquette, Providence and St. John’s. Creighton ended the season in Providence with a pair of 2-1 setbacks to the Friars in the regular-season finale and a BIG EAST Tournament quarterfinal match.
All eight of CU’s downfalls have been decided by a single goal this season. The Jays, with a 4-6 record over their last 10 matches, played the sixth-toughest schedule in the nation as of a Nov. 17 NCAA report. Creighton compiled a 4-5-2 mark against Top 50 RPI teams this season and did not play a match against a single team with an RPI below 127.
The Jays came into Selection Monday at No. 29 nationally in the latest NCAA RPI. The Bluejays’ at-large selection is their first since 2010 after CU claimed Missouri Valley Conference Tournament titles resulting in automatic bids in each of its final two seasons in the league.
CU ranks at No. 39 nationally with 31 goals this season. The Jays rank No. 40 in total assists with 29. As a result, the Jays stand at No. 41 in the country for total points heading into the tournament.
Sophomore Timo Pitter leads the CU offense this year with seven goals and 18 points. Freshman Fabian Herbers is second on the squad with 10 points and a trio of goals. Junior Jose Ribas is third on the squad with eight points that includes six helpers. Ten Bluejays have now scored multiple goals this season.
In net, junior Alex Bolowich continues to keep the Jays in tight matches with a 1.28 goals against average this year and 60 saves. Bolowich has started 15 matches, including five overtime contests, for the Jays resulting in a 7-6-1 record. Sophomore Connor Sparrow has played in six matches with four starts for Creighton compiling a 2-2-1 record and making 15 saves on the season.
Scouting the Seattle U Redhawks (10-8-2, 7-0-3 WAC)
Seattle U will make its NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship debut against Creighton on Thursday night inside Morrison Stadium. The Redhawks are coming off of a 2-1 win over San Jose State on Sunday in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Championship game.
The Redhawks have not lost since falling to then-No. 2 Washington at home 2-0 on Oct. 8, compiling an 8-0-3 record since then. As a result, SU finished as the WAC regular-season champion with a 7-0-3 ledger.
However, the beginning of the season did not go as well for SU. The Redhawks played their first six matches on the road and began the year at 0-6-1 after losing its home opener 2-1 to Georgia State on Sept. 20.
The Redhawks own a 4-6-2 record in true away games this season, but are still seeking a victory in a non-conference road contest this season. SU is 0-6-1 in seven road matches outside of the WAC this season. Like Creighton, Seattle U has played several overtime matches this season resulting in a 2-2-4 record.
SU is 0-3-0 against fellow NCAA Tournament qualifiers. The Redhawks dropped a 3-1 contest at No. 16 seed UMBC to open the season then lost to Delaware 3-2 in overtime two days later; in addition to the 2-0 loss at home to UW on Oct. 8. Seattle is No. 123 in the RPI this week which ranks lowest of the 48 squads in the tourney.
The Redhawks were picked sixth in the eight-team 2013 WAC preseason poll. Seattle finished last season at 3-13-1 overall and 1-8-1 in the now-defunct Mountain Pacific Sports Federation.
SU’s Miguel Gonzalez leads the Redhawk attack this season with 13 goals and 30 points on the year. Hamza Haddadi ranks second on the squad with five goals and 15 points. Goalie Jake Feener has played in all 22 matches for Seattle U this season compiling a record of 10-8-4 and a goals against average of 1.28.
Seattle U head coach Peter Fewing is in his second season with the Redhawks after coaching SU from 1988 to 2005. He led Seattle U to a 1997 NAIA National Championship and a 2004 NCAA Division II National Championship.
SU Quick Facts
Seattle University, founded in 1891, is a Jesuit Catholic university located on 50 acres in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood. 7,500 students are enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs within eight schools and colleges.
Men’s soccer season ticket holders can purchase their regular season seat locations for Thursday night’s first-round match by stopping by the Wayne and Eileen Ryan Athletic Center Ticket Office. Seats not purchased by season ticket holders will be made available to the general public starting at 10:00 a.m., on Thursday.
Fans that are not season ticket holders can purchase available tickets to the first-round match at all Ticketmaster locations (Baker’s, Younkers), Ticketmaster online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster and charging by phone at 800-745-3000.
Ticket prices for the first-round NCAA match are $20 (upper level adult reserved), $15 (upper level youth reserved), $10 (lower level adult reserved), $9 (lower level adult general admission), $7 (lower level youth reserved, ages 3-18) and $6 (lower level youth general admission, ages 3-18).
Men’s soccer supporters who received a packet of Lot S or Lot C parking passes to Morrison Stadium prior to the season should use the one dated Thursday, Nov. 21 and marked “NCAA First Round” for entry to those areas.
Should Creighton win its first-round contest, it would set up a second-round match with the No. 2 seed Washington (14-1-4) Huskies for the second consecutive season. Last year CU defeated UW 4-2 in a second-round match at Morrison Stadium after the Huskies defeated Air Force in a first-round contest. Washington claimed its first Pac-12 title since 2000 on Sunday.
Current UW head coach Jamie Clark coached one season at Creighton in 2010 before moving on to Seattle. Clark went 13-5-2 with the Jays and claimed the Missouri Valley Conference regular-season title that year. CU is 6-2 all-time against Washington with a 2-1 record in Seattle. Creighton fell 3-0 at Washington in the schools' first NCAA meeting in 2006.
NCAA Tournament History
Creighton is making its 21st NCAA Tournament appearance, all in the past 22 seasons (missed in 2009). CU is 28-17-6 all-time in the NCAA Tournament. The 2012 season marked the Bluejays’ fifth College Cup appearance overall and the first back-to-back appearances in program history. The Jays have now won at least two NCAA
Tournament matches in nine of their 21 trips.
The Jays are 18-7-5 in their last 10 appearances, advancing to the quarterfinals on six occasions since 2002.
CU appeared in 17 straight NCAA Tournaments between 1992 and 2008, before missing the 2009 NCAA event despite an RPI of 35. The Jays advanced to their fifth College Cup in program history in 2012 after their fourth appearance in 2011.
CU Coaches’ Quarter
Creighton fans could see some familiar faces in the postseason should the Bluejays advance in the NCAA Tournament as the most recent three coaches to roam the CU sideline are all clustered in the same quarter of the bracket.
Joining current Bluejay head coach Elmar Bolowich, who is making his 18th NCAA Tournament appearance, are former Creighton head coaches Jamie Clark of Washington and Bob Warming of Penn State. Bolowich has led CU to consecutive College Cups in his first two seasons at the helm and is 47-14-6 in three seasons in Omaha.
Creighton could face Clark’s squad in Seattle on Sunday with a victory on Thursday. Clark coached one season at Creighton in 2010 before moving on to Seattle. Clark went 13-5-2 with the Jays and claimed the Missouri Valley Conference regular-season title that year.
It would take a quarterfinal match for CU to face Warming and his Nittany Lion squad. Penn State hosts a first round match Thursday against St. Francis Brooklyn. Warming and PSU would have to win at No. 15 UCSB and possibly at No. 7 New Mexico to set up the match.
Warming coached 14 seasons at Creighton, compiling 190 wins and 11 NCAA Tournament appearances with the Jays.
Bolowich and the College Cup
CU head coach Elmar Bolowich is among six coaches who have appeared in five straight College Cups but is the only coach of the six to do so with two different schools.
The 2012 season marked his sixth overall appearance in the College Cup, joining eight other coaches that have reached six Cups. Of those nine coaches with at least six appearances, Bolowich and Bob Guelker (SIUE and Saint Louis) are the only coaches to take two different teams to the College Cup.
PKs Sometimes Not OK
Creighton has bowed out of the NCAAs on the wrong side of a PK result in two of the last three seasons. The Jays fell in a 2011 College Cup semifinal to Charlotte in a penalty kick setback. Creighton’s 2011 campaign came to an end on a 4-1 shootout loss to the 49ers after a scoreless draw.
The Jays bowed out of a 2010 NCAA Second Round match at SMU. The Mustangs advanced 5-3 on PKs after a 2-2 tie in Dallas.
However, the tide may be turning for Creighton. Prior to the Jays’ 5-4 shootout win at Akron following a 1-1 tie on Nov. 25 in a 2012 NCAA Third Round match, the last time CU advanced on PKs in the NCAA Tournament was Nov. 26, 2003 - a 5-3 win over San Diego. As a result, CU evened its record at 3-3 in NCAA matches decided by PKs.
Inaugural BIG EAST Season Review
Creighton ended its conference season in Providence with a pair of 2-1 setbacks to the Friars in the regular-season finale and a BIG EAST Tournament quarterfinal match.
CU never dipped below the .500 mark in conference and has toggled between wins and losses over the last five league matches. Overall, Creighton won three of its last five regular-season matches after a three-game scoreless drought in mid-October.
CU was 3-1 at home in BIG EAST matches beginning with a 1-0 overtime defeat of St. John’s in its conference debut (Sept. 21), a 2-0 win over Xavier (Oct. 5) a 1-0 overtime setback to Villanova (Oct. 19) and a 5-1 victory over DePaul (Nov. 2) on Senior Day.
The Bluejays’ road record in conference can be deceiving at 1-3-1 this season. All three losses were settled by a single goal. In fact the only two matches not decided by a single goal or less this year were CU victories over Xavier (2-0) and DePaul (5-1) at home.
Creighton finished 2-2-1 against the fellow 2013 BIG EAST tournament teams. The Jays tied No. 1 seed Georgetown in Washington D.C., lost at No. 2 Marquette and at No. 4 Providence while defeating No. 3 Xavier 2-0 at home and No. 6 Butler 3-2 on the road.
Creighton was 2-6-1 in true road contests this season including a 1-3-1 mark in conference.
Seven Bluejays claimed a spot on All-BIG EAST Teams this fall following the regular season. CU senior Zach Barnes earned All-BIG EAST First Team Honors. Junior Jose Ribas along with sophomores Brendan Hines-Ike and Timo Pitter claimed All-BIG EAST Second Team accolades. CU senior Bruno Castro won All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention recognition. Creighton freshmen Fabian Herbers and Ricardo Perez secured spots on the BIG EAST All-Rookie Team.
Creighton is the No. 29 team in the NCAA Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) last updated today, as a reflection of the Jays’ extremely tough schedule this season. In fact the NCAA rates the Jays’ strength of schedule at No. 6 entering the NCAA Tournament.
Seventeen of Creighton’s 19 opponents, including Providence a second time in the conference quarterfinal, this year were among the top 76 in the latest RPI that ranks all 203 NCAA Division I squads. In other words the Bluejays’ schedule has consisted of almost one-fourth of the top 64 teams in the nation. Seven of those schools also received bids into the NCAA Tournament.
Seven of the 10 programs in the BIG EAST conference rank among the top 47 in the RPI this week.
Creighton ended a string of contests that began in late September in which the Jays faced seven squads in a row that had advanced to the 2012 NCAA Tournament last season in a span of just under a month. CU completed that arduous stretch with a mark of 2-3-2.
Creighton is 2-1-1 against teams ranked in the top 25 at the time of the match including wins over then-No. 14 Tulsa and then-No. 7 St. John’s to go with a tie at then-No. 12 Georgetown. CU fell at No. 22 Saint Louis 1-0 on Oct. 2.
Since a CU scoreless streak of over 367 minutes last month, the Bluejays’ offense has found a spark by scoring 14 goals over the last six matches. The fourteen tallies account for slightly less than half of CU’s offensive scoring this season of 31 total goals.
In a convincing 5-1 victory over DePaul on Nov. 2, the Bluejays’ five tallies marked the most scored by CU since a 5-0 victory at UMKC on Aug. 31, 2011. CU scored three first-half goals to roll over the Blue Demons.
The week prior the Jays scored three goals after halftime to knock off Butler, the most tallies since the second stanza of the Bluejays’ 4-2 victory over Washington in an NCAA Second Round match in Omaha last Nov. 18.
Jays Rank Fifth in Attendance
With 26,752 fans attending matches this season, Creighton ranks fifth nationally in raw attendance according to latest numbers from the NCAA on Monday. The Jays move up to second in average attendance at 2,952 only behind UC Santa Barbara (3,648).
Over 5,200 fans witnessed Creighton’s 1-0 double-overtime defeat of No. 7 St. John’s in the Jays’ BIG EAST debut on Sept. 21 at Morrison Stadium. The crowd of 5,282 ranked as the sixth-largest crowd ever to attend a collegiate match at the Bluejays’ home.
The total edged out a contingent of 5,102 Bluejay faithful that witnessed CU defeat Columbia 3-1 earlier this season on Sept. 6. With the win, Creighton is now 5-7-1 in front of 5,000-plus fans since 2000.
At then-No. 22 Saint Louis on Oct. 2, 3,070 fans packed Hermann Stadium to watch the Bluejays battle the Billikens. It marked the largest crowd in a regular-season true road contest to see the Jays play since 5,648 fans saw CU visit then-No. 3 Maryland on Sept. 30, 2011.
Last year on Sept. 14, then-No. 2 Creighton fell 2-1 to then-No. 14 Old Dominion in front of 6,848 fans – the top home crowd all-time at Morrison Stadium.
CU Defense vs. the BIG EAST
Creighton allowed just 10 goals through its first BIG EAST season.
CU blanked its first three league foes including Xavier 2-0 on Oct. 5. Earlier CU tied then-No. 12 Georgetown in a scoreless draw on Sept. 28. The Jays knocked off then-No. 7 St. John’s 1-0 in double overtime a week prior on Sept. 21.
On Oct. 23, Butler was the first BIG EAST squad to score multiple goals on the Bluejays this season. Then three days later, Seton Hall became the first BIG EAST squad to post three goals against CU. Providence registered a pair of goals against CU on Nov. 8.
That slew of six goals followed just one score against CU in each of its prior two league contests - a 1-0 overtime loss to Villanova on Oct. 19 and a 1-0 setback at Marquette on Oct. 12. DePaul also converted a single score on a controversial penalty kick on Nov. 2.
The Jays have allowed only 14 total goals to conference foes in the past three seasons, with 12 of the 14 occurring on the road.
Creighton’s 1-0 overtime loss to Villanova Oct. 19 snapped a 12-match CU unbeaten streak at Morrison Stadium dating back to last fall when the Bluejays fell 3-1 to Saint Louis on Sept. 22. After two victories to end the home slate, Creighton is now 13-1-1 in its last 15 home matches.
The downfall to VU marked the first home loss in a conference match inside Morrison Stadium in almost three years - since a 2-1 loss to Bradley on Nov. 6, 2010.
CU is 11-1-0 against conference foes at home since then – including 10 consecutive shutout victories before the loss to the Wildcats.
The Bluejays’ 1-0 double-overtime victory over No. 7 St. John’s on Sept. 21 lifted Creighton’s record to 22-3-2 all-time against Top 25 opponents visiting Morrison Stadium.
Going the Distance
After playing a 0-0 tie at No. 12 Georgetown on Sept. 28, the Bluejays set a new program record by playing in in five consecutive double overtime contests.
Jays Claim Program Win No. 400
Creighton secured the program’s 400th all-time victory on Sept. 21 after a 1-0 double-overtime decision against No. 7 St. John’s. The Jays currently boast an all-time record of 404-162-60 since their first season in 1979.
Thrilling BIG EAST Debut
The Bluejays claimed a 1-0 double overtime victory in their BIG EAST conference debut against No. 7 St. John’s on Sept. 21 inside Morrison Stadium. Creighton stands at 2-0 all-time in conference debuts; the Jays edged Bradley 2-1 in their Missouri Valley Conference opener on Oct. 18, 1991.
Cutting It Close
Creighton’s 2-1 loss at Providence on Nov. 12 marked the Jays’ 11th one-goal decision to go along with two ties this season. CU is 15-10 in games decided by one goal since the beginning of 2012. All eight of CU’s losses this year are by a single goal.
Creighton is 2-2-2 in overtime matches this season following a 1-0 downfall to Villanova on Oct. 19, a scoreless tie at then-No. 12 Georgetown, a 2-2 tie versus Michigan State and 1-0 victory over then-No. 7 St. John’s in September.
CU suffered a 3-2 setback to William & Mary and clinched a 2-1 win at Old Dominion earlier this season at the Stihl Classic, both in overtime. The Jays went undefeated at 3-0-3 in extra time last season.
One Goal to Nil
Following CU’s 1-0 setback against Villanova on Oct. 19, Creighton has won 13 of its previous 18 matches ending in a 1-0 score, including a 7-1 ledger in 2012 contests.
Recent Overtime Perfection Halted
Prior to the 3-2 setback to William & Mary on Sept. 15, the Jays had not suffered an overtime loss in 16 matches dating back to a 3-2 setback in extra time to SMU on Sept. 17, 2010, at the Hotels at Grand Prairie Classic.
Before the overtime loss to William & Mary, Creighton boasted a 10-0-6 overtime record since that 2010 match, including the victory over Old Dominion on Sept. 13. The Jays had kept opponents scoreless in overtime for over 234 straight minutes before the Tribe scored its game winner.
Jays Achieve No. 1 Ranking for the First Time in 14 Years
Following a 3-1 victory over Columbia on Sept. 6, Creighton became the top squad in the nation according to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) poll released Sept. 10.
It marked the Jays’ first time back in the top spot since September 1999. Creighton ranked as high as No. 2 in each of the past three seasons, including earlier this fall.
Jays’ History When Perched at No. 1
After a 1-1 split against host Old Dominion and William & Mary at the Stihl Classic Sept. 13-15, Creighton now boasts a 9-2-1 record all-time as the top-ranked team in the NSCAA poll. After a double-overtime setback to the Tribe, the Bluejays dropped four spots to No. 5 in the rankings.
The Bluejays went 1-0-1 after achieving the top ranking in the Sept. 15, 1999 poll. CU defeated Harvard 6-0 before tying Boston University 1-1 a day later. The tie dropped the Jays to No. 3 the following week.
Creighton’s longest run at No. 1 occurred in 1993 when the Bluejays spent the final five weeks of the regular season in the top spot. CU finished the regular season undefeated at 19-0 including seven consecutive victories while ranked No. 1. The Jays suffered a heart-breaking four-overtime 2-1 loss to Air Force in the first round of the NCAA Tournament that season to halt the streak.
Pitter Claims BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week Honors
Creighton sophomore Timo Pitter claimed Offensive Player of the Week honors from the BIG EAST, the league office announced Nov. 4. Sophomore Eric DeJulio also claimed a spot on the BIG EAST weekly honor roll.
The Oberschwarzach, Germany native tallied six points last week en route to the honor. Pitter scored two goals, including the game winner, in a 5-1 victory over DePaul on Saturday. Earlier in the week Pitter assisted on both Bluejay goals in a 2-0 win over Drake. He currently leads the team with seven goals and 18 points this season.
Pitter’s accolade marks the first Offensive Player of the Week honor by any Bluejay this season. The weekly conference award is his first since he claimed Missouri Valley Conference Offensive Player of the Week honors last November. He has appeared on the BIG EAST weekly honor roll for his efforts on three previous times this year in weeks one, two and nine.
The honor roll achievement collected by DeJulio marks his first accolade from the BIG EAST. A Bluejay has claimed a spot on the conference weekly honor roll in seven of ten weeks this season.
DeJulio scored his first goal of the season versus Drake, the second of his career, for the game-winning score. He played all 180 minutes on defense for the Jays. DeJulio and his fellow defenders combined to allow just one goal over two matches last week.
Two Jays Earn Recognition from BIG EAST
Sophomore Brendan Hines-Ike claimed Defensive Player of the Week honors from the BIG EAST, the league office announced Sept. 30. Senior Bruno Castro also claimed a spot on the BIG EAST weekly honor roll.
It marks the first Defensive Player of the Week honor for Hines-Ike and third defensive accolade awarded to a Bluejay by the conference this season. Junior Eric Miller claimed recognition in two of the first four weeks for Creighton.
Hines-Ike won BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week honors after helping to anchor the Creighton backline against Michigan State and at No. 12 Georgetown. He played all 220 minutes in the Jays’ pair of double-overtime contests against the Spartans and Hoyas. Hines-Ike and the defense led Creighton to its second blanking of a BIG EAST foe to begin the conference slate. The Denver native has played every minute of the season on defense, helping the Jays record four shutouts through eight matches.
The honor roll achievement collected by Castro marks his first accolade from the BIG EAST. A Bluejay has claimed a spot on the conference weekly honor roll in four of the first five weeks this season.
Castro earned BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll recognition after scoring his second goal of the season as part of a three-point night in a 2-2 tie against Michigan State last week. The Costa Rica native connected on a header from 15 yards out against MSU to record the final score of the match. Castro also made an assist on the Jays’ first goal against the Spartans.
Three Jays Claim BIG EAST Weekly Honors
CU junior Eric Miller and freshman Fabian Herbers claimed Defensive Player of the Week and Rookie of the Week honors from the BIG EAST, respectively, the league announced Sept. 23. Junior Alex Bolowich also claimed a spot on the BIG EAST weekly honor roll.
It marks the second Defensive Player of the Week honor for Miller this season and Herbers’ first accolade from the conference. The honor roll recognition gained by Bolowich follows a Goalkeeper of the Week honor awarded earlier this season.
Herbers scored the lone goal of the match off of a free kick at 108:05 in a double overtime against No. 7 St. John’s to secure Creighton’s first BIG EAST victory and program win No. 400. It marked his second goal of the season, both game-winners. Herbers is currently second on the team with two goals and eight points on the season.
Herbers also earned a spot on the TopDrawerSoccer.com Team of the Week for his game-winning goal on a free kick against the Red Storm.
Miller won BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week honors after anchoring the Creighton backline against No. 7 St. John’s, helping the Bluejays record the team’s first BIG EAST victory and program win No. 400. He played all 108 minutes in the double overtime victory over St. John’s. Miller has played every minute of the season on defense, helping the Jays record four shutouts through nine matches.
Bolowich earned BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll recognition after recording his third shutout of the season and second shutout of a ranked opponent. Bolowich made three saves in the victory over No. 7 St. John’s.
Miller, Bolowich Earn BIG EAST Weekly Honors after Opening Weekend
The weekly conference honor bestowed solely on athletic performance is a career first for both Miller and Bolowich. The classmates each claimed a scholar-athlete weekly award a season ago. The weekly awards are the first given to Creighton men’s soccer student-athletes by the BIG EAST.
Miller won BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week honors after anchoring the Creighton backline on the opening weekend, helping the Bluejays record a pair of shutout wins over No. 14 Tulsa (2-0) and Cal Poly (3-0). He also scored a rare goal, just the second of his career in Omaha, against Cal Poly on a redirected header from freshman Fabian Herbers.
Bolowich shined for Creighton in the pair of shutouts to open the 2013 season to claim BIG EAST Goalkeeper of the Week accolades. Bolowich blanked No. 14 Tulsa in the Jays’ opener with seven saves. He played only the first half against Cal Poly, making two stops.
Herbers Earns Team of Week Nod in First Outing
CU freshman Fabian Herbers claimed a spot on TopDrawerSoccer’s Team of the Week, released Sept. 3, after posting four points for the Jays on the opening weekend. He helped Creighton record a pair of wins with a goal and two assists. Herbers’ first career goal as a Bluejay was the game winner against No. 14 Tulsa. He also made two assists against Cal Poly.
After blanking Cal Poly 3-0 on Sept. 1, Creighton improved its record to 16-0-3 against California-based schools in its last 19 meetings. The Jays won both matches against teams from the Golden State in 2012 defeating both Santa Clara and Saint Mary’s by 1-0 margins. Creighton’s last loss to a team from California came on Sept. 7, 2003, a 2-1 double overtime loss at Loyola Marymount.
Starting the Season Off Right
• After a 2-0 shutout of Tulsa, Creighton is unbeaten in its last seven season-opening matches, going 5-0-2 in those contests.
• Creighton has allowed one total goal to its last five season-opening opponents. Northern Illinois scored the lone goal last year after three years of shutouts.
BIG EAST Preseason Honors
The BIG EAST men’s soccer coaches selected No. 2 Creighton to place second in the 2013 preseason poll the behind fellow 2012 College Cup participant, No. 11 Georgetown.