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Second-Seeded Bulldogs Await Bradley/Evansville Winner In MVC Championship Semifinals

Courtesy: Drake Athletics
Release: November 12, 2013
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For the first time since its Elite Eight campaign of 2009, the Drake men’s soccer team opens Missouri Valley Conference Championship action this Friday (Nov. 15) as the tournament’s No. 2 seed. By virtue of their seed, the Bulldogs garnered a quarterfinal-round bye and will open competition against the winner of Wednesday’s (Nov. 13) quarterfinal tilt between Evansville and tournament host Bradley on Friday (Nov. 15) at approximately 6:00 p.m.

A free webstream of the contest will be available at

Drake maintains an 8-14-2 mark in 24 matches in MVC Championship history, including 6-9-1 under head coach Sean Holmes.  The Bulldogs have met Bradley six times in tournament play with the Braves owning a 5-0-1 mark in those encounters. Bradley won the last tournament contest between the two schools, 1-0, on Nov. 10, 2010, in Peoria, Ill. In four games versus Evansville, Drake sports a 4-0 mark, including a 2-1 victory past the Purple Aces on Nov. 7, 2012, in Peoria, Ill.

• Drake enters the MVC Tournament as the No. 2 seed for the first time since 2009. That season, the Bulldogs went on to capture their only MVC Tournament crown.
• Drake is playing in its league-best 17th MVC Tournament.
• Drake is 5-6-0 all-time in quarterfinal matches, 2-7-2 in the semifinals and 1-1 in championship tilts.
• The Bulldogs are 0-2 in games decided by penalty kicks.
• Since 2009, Drake is 2-0 in league championship play versus Evansville and 0-1 against Bradley.
• Since 2008, the Bulldogs own 7-1-1 and 6-2 marks, respectively, against Evansville and Bradley.  Drake is 1-0 in Peoria, Ill., when battling the Purple Aces and 2-2 versus the Braves at Shea Stadium.
• Drake is 3-3-1 in MVC Tournament play in contests played in Peoria, Ill. In 2005, the Bulldogs edged Missouri State in the quarterfinals, 2-1, before falling in the semifinals to Bradley, 1-0. In 2006, Drake bettered Evansville in the quarterfinals, 2-0, before losing on penalty kicks to the Braves, 5-3, in a 0-0 double-overtime tie. In 2010, Bradley downed the Bulldogs, 1-0, in the quarterfinal round. A year ago, Drake defeated Evansville, 2-1, before suffering a 3-2 double-overtime setback against Creighton.
• The only active Drake players owning goals in MVC Tournament play are redshirt junior Jarred Arde (Gulfport, Miss./Gulfport) and sophomore Eric Williams (West Des Moines, Iowa/Valley). Holding assists are seniors Addison Eck (Springfield, Ill./Sacred Heart Griffin) and Nick Marshall (Glen Carbon, Ill./Edwardsville).
• Senior Garrett Crall (Norwalk, Iowa/Norwalk) and Marshall are the Bulldogs’ active leaders in MVC Tournament starts with three apiece, while also garnering the starting assignment in two games each are Arde, Eck, seniors Rich Gallagher (Lake Bluff, Ill./Lake Forest Academy) and Bryan Jantsch (Mission Hills, Kan./Rockhurst), redshirt junior Logan North (St. Charles, Mo./Francis Howell North), redshirt sophomore Alec Bartlett (Overland Park, Kan./St. James Academy) and sophomore Austin Reutzel (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Prairie).
• Owning a team-high six shots, including two on goal in MVC Tournament action is Arde.  Registering five, three, three, two, one and one shots, respectively, in league championship play are Eck, Crall, junior Thomas Schermoly (Olathe, Kan./St. Thomas Aquinas), Bartlett, Marshall and Williams.

Bradley (10-6-2) garnered a 2-1 double-overtime triumph past Evansville on Saturday (Nov. 9) to extend its winning streak to two entering the Braves’ rematch with the Purple Aces on Wednesday (Nov. 13). Senior Alon Badat leads the Bradley attack registering a team high in goals (7). Senior Wojciech Wojcik paces the squads in assists (10), points (16) and shots (52). Senior goalkeeper Brian Billings owns 78 saves and a 1.18 goals against average this season en route to collecting seven shutouts.

Evansville (10-7-1) is in the midst of a two-game losing streak entering its showdown at Bradley on Wednesday (Nov. 13). Evansville’s high-powered attack averages 1.78 goals per tilt, while surrendering 1.61 tallies per game to its opposition.  Sophomore Mark Gonzalez has recorded a team-best nine goals.  Junior goalkeeper Eric Teppen owns the majority of minutes in goal for Evansville, registering 84 saves en route to a 1.44 goals against average and three shutouts.

Drake and Bradley have met 34 times with the series all square at 16-16-2 after the Bulldogs’ 2-1 triumph past the Braves on Oct. 26, 2013, at the Cownie Soccer Complex.

Drake maintains a 14-10-2 series lead over the Purple Aces, including a 4-0-1 mark in the last five encounters. The Bulldogs earned a 4-1 victory at Evansville on Oct. 5, 2013.

Bradley: Jim DeRose is in his 18th campaign directing the Braves registering a 202-135-39 (.589) record.
Evansville: Mike Jacobs is in his eighth season leading the Evansville program, owning a 71-68-8 (.510) ledger.  He is 100-108-13 (.482) in 12 years as a head coach.
Drake: In his 16th year on the Drake sidelines as head coach is Sean Holmes, who owns a 136-136-35 mark (.500), including 214-162-37 (.563) overall, in his 20th year as a head coach.

Sean Holmes was named head men’s soccer coach at Drake in 1998 and this season marks his 16th campaign directing the Bulldogs’ fortunes.

During Holmes’ 16-year tenure, the Bulldogs have posted a 136-136-35 record, building a legacy of excellence on Drake’s campus and in the Missouri Valley Conference.  In 20 years as a head coach he has amassed a 214-162-37 overall record.

In 2012, the Bulldogs were faced with reloading a squad that lost six starters from a team that went 11-8-1 in 2011. Despite the challenges, Drake registered a 6-11-4 ledger, including a 2-2-2 record in the MVC and a spot in the semifinals of the MVC Championship. The Bulldogs posted a 0-0 double-overtime tie with No. 12 Creighton on Sept. 29 at the Cownie Soccer Complex and took the 12th-rated Bluejays to double overtime in the semifinals of the MVC Championship before dropping a 3-2 decision.

Led by senior Michael Thaden, who was chosen as a first-team All-MVC men’s soccer selection, four Drake student-athletes garnered All-MVC accolades. Redshirt junior Rich Gallagher and junior Addison Eck were tabbed honorable mention selections, while redshirt freshman Alec Bartlett was recognized as an all-freshman team recipient.  Thaden was also a Continental Tires/National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-Midwest Regional selection.

Juniors Garrett Crall and Nick Marshall garnered All-MVC Men’s Soccer Scholar-Athlete accolades, while Marshall went on to be named a second-team honoree to the 2012 Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Men’s Soccer Team, as chosen by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

Holmes’ 2011 squad turned in a strong campaign finishing with an 11-8-1 mark en route to a berth in the semifinals of the MVC Championship. Led by seniors Matt Kuhn and Charles Schwartz, seven Drake student-athletes garnered All-MVC accolades.

Kuhn, an MLS supplemental draft selection by DC United, was named to the Capital One Academic All-America first team and also joined Thomas Ostrander on the NSCAA All-America team. Kuhn was named to the second team, while Ostrander became only the third Bulldog to pull in honors more than once with his selection to the third team.  He was a first-team honoree in 2010.

Kuhn, Ostrander and Schwartz also were chosen 2011 Continental Tires/NSCAA All-Midwest Regional selections.  Tabbed to the second team was Kuhn, while Ostrander and Schwartz were named to the third team. It marked the fourth consecutive season and 10th time in program history that the Bulldogs have garnered at least two players on the all-region squad.

Coming on the heels of the most successful season in school history in 2009, the 2010 edition of the Bulldogs turned in a successful 8-8-2 record (4-2-1 MVC), including a 1-0 road victory over Michigan, who advanced to the College Cup, and 1-1 double-overtime tie with No. 12 UC Irvine.

Senior Nick Foster, who was chosen as a first team All-MVC men’s soccer selection, led eight Drake student-athletes garnering All-MVC accolades.

Additionally, Foster and Ostrander were both tabbed 2010 NSCAA/Performance Subaru All-Midwest Regional third-team selections.

The Bulldogs were equally successful off the field as Foster and Ostrander became the first-ever Bulldogs named to the first team NSCAA Men’s College Scholar All-America Team. The duo became the ninth and 10th Drake players to garner NSCAA Academic All-America accolades, and the first two to be named to the first team.

Drake posted a school-record 16-7-2 mark in 2009, capped off by winning its first ever MVC Tournament championship while advancing to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament.

Drake earned its highest ranking in school history, being rated No. 8 in the final 2009 National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Top-25 National Poll.  The Bulldogs also rated eighth in the final 2009 NCAA RPI tabulation.

The Bulldogs posted 2009 NCAA Tournament victories past Western Illinois (2-1), No. 13 ranked Ohio State (1-0, overtime) and Boston College (6-4) before falling at nationally ranked North Carolina (2-1).

Garrett Webb was a semifinalist for the 2009 Missouri Athletic Club’s Hermann Trophy that is the highest individual honor in college soccer.  He also became the second Drake player to earn All-America status with his selection to the NSCAA and College Soccer News second and third team All-America squads, respectively.

A national-best three Bulldogs were named to the 2009 CoSIDA ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America teams led by senior Brian Wurst, who became the initial first team Academic All-American honoree in school history.  Joining him on the second and third teams, respectively, were junior Matt Kuhn and senior Calvin Clark.  Drake’s three selections marked the most of any school in the country in the university division (Division I), besting Akron and South Carolina, who garnered two selections each.

Holmes led the Bulldogs to a school-record 13-5-1 mark in 2008, including six-consecutive shutouts to open the season. Drake finished second in the Missouri Valley Conference with a 4-1-0 record and made its first-ever NCAA tournament appearance, receiving an at-large bid. The Bulldogs were nationally ranked for the final 10 weeks of the season.

Holmes came to Drake after serving as the top assistant at conference-rival Evansville from 1995-98. During his tenure at Evansville, the Aces compiled a 47-30-6 record, winning the 1996 MVC championship. The team, which he helped build, garnered an NCAA Tournament berth and a top 20 ranking.

Holmes holds a USSF ‘A’ level coaching license and is a member of the Region II staff for the Olympic Development Program. He serves as a staff coach for the Iowa Soccer Association, and also served as age group coach for both the 1978 and 1984 Region II teams. He was an assistant coach at the 1994 U.S. Olympic Sports Festival in St. Louis, Mo.

Holmes and his wife, Dr. Carrie Holmes, reside in Des Moines with their three sons, Matthew, Samuel and Andrew.

In its regular season finale, Drake collected a 1-1 double-overtime tie at Central Arkansas last Friday (Nov. 8).

The Bears garnered the game’s initial tally when Logan Miller connected on his fifth goal of the season at the 2:42 mark off an assist from David Ngwenya.

The Bulldogs evened the affair at one in the seventh minute (6:43) on the fourth goal of the year by Nick Marshall. Bryan Jantsch earned the assist on the tally.

The Bulldogs were outshot in the first half by Central Arkansas, 8-4, including 4-1 on goal.

The Bears bettered Drake in the second half in shots, 9-5, before owning a 5-1 shot advantage in overtime.

The Bulldogs received a team-high two shots from Addison Eck. Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod (Waterloo, Ontario/Resurrection Catholic) collected a game-high eight saves for Drake.  

Drake men’s soccer senior Nick Marshall and junior Thomas Schermoly earned recognition for their efforts in the classroom being tabbed first-team Capital One Academic All-America All-District VI selections.

Marshall was named to the first team for the third consecutive year, while Schermoly earned the honor for the first time.

A team captain, Marshall, who boasts a perfect 4.00 GPA majoring in computer science and chemistry, owns four goals and two assists for the Bulldogs this season. He has helped spark Drake to five shutouts this season, including a 1-0 road win at No. 14 New Mexico.

Schermoly, maintains a 3.72 GPA in biology and has appeared in 18 games for the Bulldogs registering three goals on only seven shots. Earlier this fall, he recorded Drake’s first hat trick since 2005 with a three-goal performance in a 4-1 road triumph at Evansville.

Drake is the highest-rated team in the Missouri Valley Conference in the latest NCAA RPI rankings released on Nov. 11.  The Bulldogs check in at No. 58 and are followed by Bradley (No. 70), Evansville (No. 97), Missouri State (No. 100), SIU Edwardsville (No. 114), Loyola (No. 133) and Central Arkansas (No. 163).

• Drake boasts a balanced scoring attack that doesn’t feature a single player ranked in the top-10 in the MVC in goals, shots and points per game.
• The Bulldogs led the conference in league-only affairs in assists (1.67), goals (1.50), points (4.67) and saves (6.17) per tilt.
• Senior Bryan Jantsch, redshirt freshman Darrin MacLeod and junior Thomas Schermoly paced the MVC in league-only affairs in assists (0.67), saves (5.83), goals (0.50) and points (1.17) per game.
• The Bulldogs secured their highest MVC Championship seed (No. 2) since 2009 and finished second in the final conference standings for the first time since 2009 and fourth time overall (1994, 2008 and 2009).
• The Bulldogs suffered back-to-back non-conference losses at Creighton and UIC for the first time since dropping 4-2 and 2-0 decisions, respectively, against Cal Poly and Tulsa in Drake’s initial two games of the season.
• Led by goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod, Drake has registered five shutouts this season, its highest total since recording eight in 2009.
• Drake has gotten unexpected offensive production this season as sophomore Danton Irelan (Ottumwa, Iowa/Ottumwa), Jarred Arde, Nick Marshall,  junior Thomas Schermoly and Bryan Jantsch (Mission Hills, Kan./Rockhurst) lead the Bulldogs with four, four, four, three and three goals, respectively.  The quintet entered the season with a combined 11 career goals, four apiece from Arde and Marshall and three by Schermoly.
• Sophomore Eric Williams’ two-goal effort versus Bradley marked the second multi-goal performance of the season for the Bulldogs.
• Drake was shut out three times at home this season marking the first time since 2004 that this has happened.
• Since starting the season 0-2, Drake has posted an 8-5-4 mark in its last 17 games.  In those contests, the Bulldogs are averaging 1.35 goals and 11.5 shots per game.
• The Bulldogs have gotten scoring contributions from 15 different players this season.
• Drake’s contest versus Missouri State (Oct. 12) marked the 300th game in head coach Sean Holmes’ Bulldog coaching career.
Thomas Schermoly’s hat trick at Evansville was the first for a Bulldog since Jesse Baker recorded three goals in a 3-2 triumph past No. 16 Creighton on Oct. 26, 2005.
Thomas Schermoly’s three-goal explosion also doubled his career goal output as he had not found the back of the net since recording three goals as a freshman in 2011.
• The four goals for Drake against the Purple Aces marked the most in a conference game for the Bulldogs since posting a 4-1 win at Eastern Illinois on Nov. 4, 2009.
• With its 4-1 victory at Evansville, Drake is now 8-9-6 all-time in league openers in The Valley, including 6-4-6 under head coach Sean Holmes.  Over the last 12 seasons, the Bulldogs are 6-0-6 in conference openers.
• Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod registered shutouts in his first four collegiate starts and has allowed 15 goals this season in 16 games.  He is second in the Missouri Valley Conference in save percentage (.821), third in goals against average (1.03) and fourth in saves (4.31) per game.
• Drake goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod was selected as the MVC Defensive Player of the Week for the period of Oct. 21-27. MacLeod turned in a strong week for Drake recording 17 saves and posting a 0.90 goals against average en route to collecting a 1-0-1 mark.
Alec Bartlett was selected as the MVC Defensive Player of the Week for the period of Sept. 30 - Oct. 6. He helped the Bulldogs extend their winning streak to four and unbeaten run to six as Drake garnered its fourth consecutive shutout with a 1-0 victory at Western Illinois (Oct. 1) before turning in a dominating 4-1 triumph at Evansville (Oct. 5).
• Drake swept the weekly MVC men’s soccer accolades for the period of Sept. 23-29 as senior Bryan Jantsch and Darrin MacLeod were named as the conference’s Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week, respectively. Jantsch registered the game-winning goal in the third minute (2:48) of Drake’s 1-0 victory past UMKC (Sept. 28). In only his third career start, MacLeod notched his third consecutive shutout with a five-save performance in a 1-0 win over the Kangaroos.
• Drake swept the weekly MVC accolades for the period of Sept. 16-22 as senior Addison Eck and Darrin MacLeod were named as the conference’s Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week. Eck sparked the Bulldogs to back-to-back shutouts, including scoring the game-winning goal in a 1-0 victory at No. 14 New Mexico (Sept. 20). MacLeod made a splash in his first two collegiate starts against DePaul and No. 14 New Mexico, registering 10 saves en route to posting back-to-back shutouts.
Addison Eck was named the MVC Scholar-Athlete of the Week on Sept. 25 for his performances versus DePaul and New Mexico.
• Drake’s victory over No. 14 New Mexico was the first for the Bulldogs over a ranked opponent since defeating No. 13 Ohio State, 1-0 in overtime, in the second round of the 2009 NCAA Tournament.
• named Thomas Schermoly to its national team of the week on Oct. 8.
• College Sports Madness named Darrin MacLeod its Madness Men’s Soccer MVC Player of the Week on Sept. 24 and Oct. 1 after he registered shutouts in Drake’s games versus DePaul, No. 14 New Mexico and UMKC.
• The Bulldogs’ game with DePaul (Sept. 17) marked the 400th in the coaching career of Drake head coach Sean Holmes.
• Named to the Panther Invitational all-tournament team were Mueng Sunday and Alec Bartlett.
• Senior goalkeeper Rich Gallagher’s eight combined saves versus Cal Poly and No. 14 Tulsa moved him into sixth place all-time at Drake in career saves.  He owns 172 career saves, 30 shy of surpassing Jordan Kadlec (2008-11) for fifth place all-time at Drake.
Rich Gallagher is ranked sixth, seventh, eighth, eighth, eighth, eighth and ninth, respectively, in career saves (172), minutes (2,963), shutouts (4), wins (10), games (33) and goals against average (1.85).
Jarred Arde and Nick Marshall are Drake’s active career leaders in goals (8), while Addison Eck paces the squad in assists (8) and points (21).  Bryan Jantsch owns a team-best 64 career shots.  Marshall leads active Bulldogs on the roster in games played (75) and contests started (71).
Rich Gallagher’s 122 saves last season established a new single-season mark in school history.
• The Bulldogs are 38-13-9 since 2006 in home games, including 25-11-4 since 2009.

Drake held its ninth annual alumni reunion in conjunction with the Bulldogs’ clash against Bradley this past Saturday (Oct. 26). Drake head coach Sean Holmes and the current Bulldogs welcomed back all of the proud alumni that have contributed to the growth and development of the Drake men’s soccer tradition over the course of the program’s 28 years.

Drake’s conference showdown against Bradley represented Senior Day for seniors Garrett Crall, Addison Eck, Rich Gallagher, Bryan Jantsch, Nick Marshall and Jackson Teeling (Waukee, Iowa/Dowling Catholic) along with fourth-year juniors Jarred Arde, Logan North and Kevin Wilson (Ballwin, Mo./Chaminade College Prep).  The group was recognized in special pre-game ceremonies.

Crall has appeared in 58 career games owning three goals. The Bulldogs’ active leader in assists and points is Eck with eight and 21, respectively. Gallagher is ranked sixth, seventh, eighth, eighth, eighth, eighth and ninth, respectively, in career saves (172), minutes (2,963), shutouts (4), wins (10), games (33) and goals against average (1.85). Jantsch is Drake’s active leader in shots (64), while also recording three goals and eight assists. Marshall leads active Bulldogs on the roster in games played (75) and contests started (71) and has registered eight goals and four assists. Teeling has appeared in 30 games, posting five career shots.  Arde is Drake’s active leader in career goals (8), while ranking second in shots (63), points (20) and game-winners (2). North has started 43 of the 59 games he has played as a Bulldogs, registering two goals and four assists on 32 shots.  Wilson has appeared in one career contest as a Bulldog.

Drake’s recent resurgence can be tied to the continued development of its defensive corps led by Alec Bartlett, Nick Marshall, Logan North and sophomore Austin Reutzel (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Prairie), along with goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod.  Over the last 14 games, the Bulldogs have posted five shutouts.

Drake head coach Sean Holmes has been consistent in his praise of the play of freshman Mueng Sunday in the midfield for the Bulldogs this season.  Through its first 19 games in 2013 with Sunday versus the initial 19 contests in 2012 without, Drake has reduced its opponents goals per game and shot and shots on goal percentages.

The change of season has boded well for Drake over the years as the flipping of the calendar from September to October has ignited the Bulldogs into some of their best soccer of the season.  In Drake’s last 10 campaigns, including this fall, under head coach Sean Holmes, the Bulldogs own a 38-22-10 record (.614), including a 5-3-1 mark this season, and have posted seven consecutive winning months in October.

Drake 2, Bradley 1 (Oct. 26, 2013)
DES MOINES, Iowa - Eric Williams picked an opportune time to score his first two goals of the season as his efforts sparked Drake to a 2-1 victory past Bradley on Senior Night at the Cownie Soccer Complex.

The Bulldogs and Braves battled through a scoreless first half with Bradley registering a 9-5 advantage in shots in the game’s initial 45 minutes.

Drake broke the stalemate in the 60th minute (59:25) when Williams connected on a header at the top of the six-yard box that beat Braves’ goalkeeper Brian Billings.  The goal was set-up as a result of passes from Alec Bartlett into Bryan Jantsch before Williams connected on his first goal of the season.

Williams extended Drake’s lead to 2-0 delivering a nearly identical goal at the 65:01 mark off an assist from Jantsch.

The Braves cut the deficit in half in the 77th minute (76:48) when Christian Okeke sent a laser that sailed past the goal line before being knocked out by a diving goalkeeper Darrin MacLeod.

The Bulldogs were able to contain the Braves’ pressure, including a pair of shots on goal over the final 13:12, to secure a 2-1 victory.

Bradley finished the affair posting a 20-10 margin in shots, including 11-5 in the second half.

Addison Eck paced the Bulldogs with a team-high three shots. MacLeod recorded seven saves for Drake, including four in the second half.  

Drake 4, Evansville 1 (Oct. 5, 2013)
EVANSVILLE, Ind. - Thomas Schermoly’s three-goal performance sparked the Drake men’s soccer team to a come-from-behind 4-1 victory over Evansville in the Missouri Valley Conference opener for both schools.

Evansville assumed a 1-0 lead in the affair after Patrick Hodges headed in a corner kick from Faik Hajderovic at the 7:54 mark.

The Purples Aces maintained their advantage until Schermoly evened the affair at one connecting on his first goal of the season in the 26th minute (25:10).  Redshirt freshman Ben LeMay (Hugo, Minn./St. Thomas Academy) played the ball into Schermoly in the box, who took the pass and beat Evansville goalkeeper Eric Teppen from six yards out.

The score was tied at halftime, despite the Purple Aces owning an 11-5 advantage in shots in the initial stanza.

The Bulldogs took the lead for good when Schermoly delivered what proved to be the game-winning tally in the 49th minute (48:11).  Austin Reutzel played a long ball over the defense that Schermoly converted into a 2-1 Drake advantage.

The Bulldogs extended their margin to 3-1 after Danton Irelan recorded his fourth goal of the year at the 57:46 mark.  Earning the assist on the tally was Bryan Jantsch.

Schermoly capped off his scoring explosion with his third goal of the afternoon in the 80th minute (79:16).  Sophomore Brandon Welter (Mankato, Minn./Mankato East) was credited with the assist on the score.

Evansville posted a 21-9 advantage in shots in the game, including 9-5 on goal.  Drake made the most of its opportunities as four of the Bulldogs’ five shots on goal found the back of the net.

Schermoly led the Drake attack with a team-high three shots. Darrin MacLeod made a game-high six saves for the Bulldogs.  Drake benefitted from a pair of team saves that thwarted Evansville scoring opportunities.

The Bulldogs own a 1-2 record in its previous three games played on Nov. 15. In its last appearance on Nov. 15, Drake earned its first-ever MVC Tournament title with a 2-1 victory past Evansville at the Cownie Soccer Complex.
The Bulldogs are nationally-ranked in several NCAA statistical categories this season.  As a team, Drake is 36th in saves per game (5.05), 56th in total assists (25), 69th in total points (75), 74th in total goals (25) and 78th in assists per game (1.32).  Individually, Darrin MacLeod ranks 28th in save percentage (.821), 52nd in total saves (69), 67th in goals against average (1.03) and 68th in saves per game (4.31).

The Bulldogs own a 1-2-2 mark in their last five contests, with four of the five occurring away from home.  Three Drake players have registered a goal, with Nick Marshall and Eric Williams leading the way with two goals apiece, followed by Logan North with one goal. Marshall and Williams lead the team in scoring with four each.  Marshall and North paces Drake with six shots apiece.  Darrin MacLeod has been peppered by 90 shots in that span in goal and has posted 30 saves.

In their eight victories this season, the Bulldogs are registering 12.2 shots, 3.9 corner kicks and 5.8 saves, while their opponents are recording 14.2 shots, 5.5 corner kicks and 3.1 saves.  In its seven losses, Drake has recorded 8.7 shots, 3.6 corner kicks and 3.0 saves, while surrendering 14.7 shots, 6.6 corner kicks and 2.9 saves.

Drake is rated No. 4 in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Midwest Regional Poll released on Nov. 12.  UAB is the regional leader, followed by Creighton, Tulsa, Drake, Missouri State, Bradley, Memphis, Evansville, Oakland and Houston Baptist.

The Bulldogs return an experienced squad this season as eight starters are back for a Drake team that finished the 2012 campaign with a 6-11-4 ledger, including 2-2-2 in the Missouri Valley Conference.  Senior Addison Eck is the Bulldogs’ top-returning scorer after recording five goals and a team-high four assists in 2012.  Senior goalkeeper Rich Gallagher started all 21 games for Drake a year ago and pulled in a school-record 122 saves.

Drake senior Addison Eck and redshirt junior Jarred Arde were among 11 players tabbed by a vote of the seven Missouri Valley Conference head men’s soccer coaches as All-MVC Preseason first-team selections, the league announced on Monday (Aug. 26).

Eck started all 21 games for Drake in 2012 registering five goals, while adding a team-high four assists en route to honorable mention All-MVC honors.  He ranked second on the team in goals (5), points (14), shots (30), shots on goal (15) and game-winners (1).  Eck finished sixth in the MVC in assists (4), seventh in goals (5) and eighth in points per game (0.67).

Arde appeared in 21 games, including 17 starts for the Bulldogs a year ago en route to recording three goals and an assist.  He ranked third on the squad in goals (3), points (7) and shots (29).

Drake was picked to finish second in the MVC Coaches Preseason poll with 36 points and one first-place vote.  Pegged ahead of the Bulldogs was league favorite SIU Edwardsville (40 points).  Rounding out the poll were Evansville (36 points), Bradley (35 points), Missouri State (21 points), Central Arkansas (19 points) and Loyola (9 points).

A pair of Bulldogs were honored when College Sport Madness released its men’s soccer MVC preseason team.  Senior Addison Eck was tabbed as a first-team honoree, while senior Nick Marshall was chosen as a second-team selection.

A victory advances Drake to the MVC title game for the third time and first since 2009 when the Bulldogs captured their first-ever tournament championship.  A loss and Drake will await word as to whether its body of work merits an at-large selection to the NCAA Tournament

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