Nov. 5, 2012
CONWAY - The eighth nationally-ranked and Big South Regular Season Champion Coastal Carolina men's soccer team will begin its march to the 2012 Big South Tournament championship by hosting eighth-seeded Presbyterian College in a quarterfinal round match Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the CCU Soccer Field.
Coastal dominated its way to the program's second straight and 11th overall Big South regular season championship with a perfect 10-0-0 league mark. The Chants outscored their league foes by a 31-2 count, while posting nine shutouts. Moreover, Coastal held UNC Asheville and VMI without shots on goal.
No. 8 Coastal Carolina (16-1-2, 10-0-0 BSC) vs. Presbyterian College (4-15-0, 3-7-0 Big South)
Match 20 | Big South Tournament Quarterfinal Round (No. 1 seed vs. No. 8 seed)
Date/Time: Nov. 6, 2012 | 7 p.m. ET
Venue: CCU Soccer Field | Conway, S.C.
Video Stream: www.BigSouthSports.com
Live Stats: www.GoCCUSports.com
2012 Big South Conference Regular Season Champions
Streaks: Win 13 (CCU record is 15, 2002); Unbeaten 17 (CCU record is 21, 2001-02)
In the Polls
The 2012 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers have set a school-record with this week's national poll rankings. The Chanticleers are ranked as high as eighth by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA), the official poll recognized by the NCAA, and Soccer Times. The No. 8 ranking surpasses the program's previous high of No. 9 in 2003, 2011 and three weeks this season. In addition, the Chants are ranked ninth by Top Drawer Soccer, Soccer America and 10th by College Soccer News.
In the NCAA Statistical Rankings
After leading the nation in goals per game (3.0) and total goals (66) last season, the Chanticleers are once again back on top of the rankings this season. Coastal ranks first in the NCAA in goals (48), second in assists (49) and total points (145), while holding the fifth spot with a 2.53 goals per game average. In addition, the Chants' defensive unit ranks sixth in goals against average (0.61) and 10th in shutout percentage (0.53). Coastal ranks second in the country with a .895 winning percentage, trailing only Cornell's (14-1-0) .933.
One of Two in the Nation
Coastal Carolina finished its second consecutive Big South regular season with a perfect 10-0-0 record. Coastal and Akron (7-0-0, Mid-American) are the only two teams in the entire NCAA to finish its conference regular season with a perfect, unblemished mark.
If He Scores, They will Fall
With his pair of goals against Radford on Oct. 27, senior striker Ashton Bennett has netted goals in 22 of 42 games in a Chanticleer uniform. In all, the Chants are a staggering 21-1 when the Jamaican strike finds the back of the net, including a perfect 8-0 this season. The only defeat was at the hands of eventual national champion North Carolina in the Second Round of the 2011 NCAA Tournament.
No. 1 Seed for the Sixth Time
In clinching the Big South regular season championship with a 4-1 win at Radford on Oct. 27, the Chanticleers have guaranteed themselves the No. 1 seed in the forthcoming Big South Tournament. This marks the second consecutive and sixth overall time the Chants have entered the championship tournament with top seeding. Due to a change in the tournament format this season, the Chants will play host to the eighth-seed team in a quarterfinal matchup on Tuesday, Nov. 6 at the CCU Soccer Field. Kickoff for the match is set for 7 p.m. The semifinal and championship matches of the 2012 Big South Tournament will be played at Bryan Park in Greensboro, N.C.
Garbanzo Nets First Career Hat Trick and Trio of Plaudits
Garbanzo, a Rock Hill, S.C., native put in four goals and dished out one assist to lead the Chanticleers to a 2-0 record last week, including a win over Radford to clinch the Big South Regular-Season Championship. At South Carolina on Oct. 24, he netted all three scores in Coastal's 3-2 win, marking his first career hat trick. After South Carolina took the early lead, Garbanzo kicked in his first score of the contest in the 47th minute and followed with another goal two minutes later. He closed out the hat trick in the 53rd minute. Three days later at Radford, he scored in the 72nd as he finished an Ashton Bennett through ball. He then assisted on Bennett's goal in the 76th minute to give Coastal Carolina the 4-1 win. For his efforts, he was named to the Top Drawer Soccer and College Soccer News National Teams of the Week and earned his first Big South Attacking Player of the Week nod this season.
The Honors Continue
Coastal Carolina men's soccer backline mates Henrik Robstad, Jhamie Hyde, Uchenna Uzo and Shawn McLaws have been named to the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Week for the week ending Oct. 21. In addition, Uzo was singled out by College Soccer News as a member of its weekly National Team and by the Big South Conference as the Defensive Player of the Week. The quartet joins forwards Ashton Bennett and Ricky Garbanzo as Chanticleers to be honored as members of Top Drawer Soccer's National Team of the Week this season. Robstad, Hyde, Uzo and McLaws combined to help post the team's third consecutive shutout and ninth of the season.
Coastal is riding a 13 game winning and 17 game unbeaten streak. During the winning streak the Chants have outscored their opponents by a staggering 37-7 margin, including a 31-2 margin in Big South play. Through the 17 game unbeaten streak Coastal has outscored opponents 44-11.
Staying Perfect in Big South Play
With its 1-nil win over High Point on Friday, Nov. 2, Coastal extended its current Big South Conference regular season winning streak to 19 games dating back to the start of the 2011 season (20 game unbeaten streak, 18-0-1, dating back to the final game of the 2010 season). In posting a perfect 9-0-0 conference mark en route to a regular season championship in 2011 and a 10-0-0 record this season, the current Chants have easily surpassed Coastal's previous Big South regular season winning streak of 12 games that was established from the 2006-08 seasons.
So You Want to Come to the Beach
Since moving to their current home in 2002, the Chanticleers are 68-19-6 (.763) at the CCU Soccer Field. Moreover, Coastal holds an impressive 29-4-4 (.837) home record since the 2009 campaign, including a 9-0-1 record this season.
Bennett is Catching Fire
After a somewhat slow start to the season Ashton Bennett has caught fire. He has found the back of the net nine times in his last nine outings, including a stretch of a pair of goals in three consecutive games from Oct. 6-13. Bennett currently leads the Big South and ranks eighth in the NCAA in total goals with 13. He ranks eighth in the country in total points (31), 17th in goals per game (0.72) and 16th in points per game (1.72). With his two-goal output at Radford on Oct. 27, the Clarendon, Jamaica, native moved into sole possession of seventh place in the CCU record book with 36 career goals in only 40 games played.
Spreading the Joy of Goals
Last season the Chanticleers led the NCAA with 66 goals in 22 games with Ashton Bennett (23) and Pedro Ribeiro (9) recording 32 of the scoring strikes. This season Coastal has netted 48 goals in 19 games to again lead the nation. However, unlike the 2011 campaign 13 different Chants have scored, and while Bennett again leads the team with his 13 goals he is one of seven Chanticleers to score two or more goals this season. Sophomore Ricky Garbanzo ranks second on the team with a career-high 11 counters followed by senior Robby Joe Daniels and freshman Tevin Skyers with four each.
Give it Your Best Shot ... If You Can Get One Off
To date the Chanticleers have posted a combined 10 team shutouts (tying for fifth on the CCU single season list) and an impressive .810 save percentage. Goalkeeper Federico Bertele's has recorded 6.2 of those shutouts and ranks 10th in the NCAA with a .67 goals against average. However, Bertele and the other keepers' work has been limited this season due to the outstanding play of the Chants' backline. The Coastal defensive unit led by All-American candidates Kjartan Sigurdsson and Uchenna Uzo has limited opponents to a mere 160 shot attempts (8.42 per game) and only 60 on goal (3.31 per game). Moreover, Coastal's high-pressure defense has held three opponents (Florida Atlantic, UNC Asheville, VMI) without a shot on frame.
The Winning General
Coastal Carolina's 2-1 win over UNC Greensboro was the 200th for Chanticleer head coach Shaun Docking. Docking, who has collected 188 of his 200 wins at CCU, became the 46th active NCAA Division I coach to achieve the career milestone. Docking, who became Coastal's all-time wins leader with victory 167 over UNC Ashville on Oct. 15, 2011, entered the season as the 28th winningest active coach in the NCAA by percentage (.633) and 47th by total victories (194-107-9). To date, Docking holds a 209-107-29 (.647) overall record (17 years), including a 189-88-27 (.666) record in 15 seasons on the Chanticleer sideline.
Bennett Named Senior CLASS Finalist
As for Bennett, the Chants' standout was named one of 10 men's soccer finalists for the 2012 Senior CLASS Award for student-athletes who excel both on and off the field. The winner will be selected by a combination of media, coaches and fan votes, which can be made online at www.seniorCLASSaward.com. The results of the voting will be announced during the College Cup championships Dec. 7-9 in Hoover, Ala.