The Boston University men’s soccer team will look to end its three-game winless streak when it takes on Brown University at Stevenson Field in Providence, R.I., Tuesday night.
The Terriers (3-4-1, 0-1 Patriot League) could not capitalize on their 18 shots they had against Navy (4-3-2, 1-0 Patriot League) Saturday night, as they lost by a score of 1-0. This was an important game momentum-wise and also signified the start of Patriot League conference play.
Both the Terriers and Navy had the same amount of shots (18) and corner kicks (three), but BU was unable to convert on any of its chances. This has been a recurring theme for the Terriers as of late, as they have been held scoreless in each of their last three games.
Scoring goals in general has not been a strong point for the Terriers this season. They currently rank seventh in the Patriot League in shots (96), points (21), goals (seven) and goals per game (0.88).
Senior midfielder Anthony Ciccone is currently second in the Patriot League in assists (four) and assists per game (0.5). Even though freshman forward Felix De Bona has not been very active over the past three games due to injury, he still ranks in the top ten of the Patriot League with two goals.
The Terriers and the Bears (2-4-1) have met in each of the last three years with Brown winning all three times. In what was its first home game of the 2012 season, BU was defeated by the then-No. 24 Bears by a score of 1-0 in extra time.
The goal came at the very beginning of the first half of extra time, when defender Tim Whalen headed the ball past junior goalkeeper Nick Thomson. The Terriers had several shots on goal in that game, but could not connect on any of them.
The Terriers will look to provide some offensive firepower Tuesday night to back up the continued sensational play of redshirt freshman goalkeeper Matt Gilbert. Gilbert is tied for second in the Patriot League with 33 saves and a .846 save percentage. He has allowed only one goal over the past two games, including a double-overtime shutout of Harvard University last Wednesday, which resulted in a scoreless tie.
Brown also has a successful goalie in senior Josh Weiner, who has accumulated 29 saves this year. This is Weiner’s first full season handling starting duties, as he has been a backup in all his previous years at Brown.
The Bears also rely on the experienced play of defender Alex Markes, who earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors twice in 2011. Markes started all 19 games last season for the Bears and played 18 complete games.
Brown ended a five-game winless streak Friday night when it decimated Marist College by a score of 5-0. The Bears received two goals from midfielder Tariq Akeel, his first tallies of the season. The Bears had some tough games during that winless streak including two double-overtime games, which resulted in one tie and one loss.
This will be the third game in BU’s four-game road trip, and the team will be looking for its first win on the road. The Terriers had a four-game home stand in which they finished 3-1, and have a 3-2 overall home record, but they have not been able to replicate their success on the road — so far this season, the Terriers (0-2-1) have not won away from Nickerson Field.
The Terriers’ lack of road success may be attributed to the Terriers’ inexperience, as they only have five seniors on the team. In the game against Navy, the Terriers had seven underclassmen who each played significant portions of the game.
Some experience is slowly returning to the Terriers, however, because in the Navy game, BU got one of its prime defenders back in junior defenseman Kelvin Madzongwe. Even though he only played 37 minutes, it is a welcome sight for the Terriers to get back the 2011 American East Defender of the Year as he returns from injury.