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FGCU Posts Dominating 5-0 Win Over NJIT

Published: October 29, 2017

FORT MYERS, Fla. – After waiting an extra day to play its home regular-season finale, the FGCU men’s soccer team (7-5-3, 4-1-1 ASUN) wasted little time in getting going on Sunday as the Eagles scored twice in the opening six minutes en route to a dominant, pivotal 5-0 win over NJIT (8-7-3, 3-2-1 ASUN) on Senior Day at the FGCU Soccer Complex.

 

With the victory, FGCU clinches the No. 2 seed in the ASUN Tournament with 13 points. That gives the Eagles a bye into the semifinals, which they will host next Sunday, Nov. 5, at 1 p.m. FGCU will also host an opening-round matchup between No. 3 NJIT and No. 6 Lipscomb (9-7-1, 2-4-0 ASUN) on Friday, Nov. 3, at 5 p.m.. The Green and Blue will play the winner of that contest in the semifinals.

 

Top-seeded Stetson (7-6-2, 4-0-2 ASUN) will host the other semifinal on Nov. 5 as the Hatters will take on the winner of No. 4 North Florida (3-9-2, 2-3-1 ASUN) and No. 5 Jacksonville (4-9-1, 2-3-1 ASUN). A table featuring the final ASUN standings is at the end of this release.

 

Playing his final regular-season game at The Nest, Albert Ruiz (Barcelona, Spain/ CE L’Hospitalet/UE Cornella) scored just 3:54 into the match and added his second tally at the 5:15 mark to set the tone for a statement win by the Eagles. FGCU entered the match needing to defeat the Highlanders to secure the No. 2 seed and opening-round bye.

 

Fellow senior Nicolas Samayoa made it 3-0 just before halftime, and sophomore Shak Adams converted his team-leading sixth goal of the year in the 68th minute to put the contest completely out of reach. Sophomore transfer Lucas Bueno – making just his sixth appearance of the year – netted his first goal with the Eagles in the 88th minute to conclude the scoring.

 

Sophomore Jared Brown (Aurora, Ontario/St. Maximilian Kolbe CHS) made his second-straight start in net, and he responded with a pair of saves to pick up his first shutout of the season.

 

Making the performance even more impressive was that FGCU shut down the nation’s leading scorer in Mamadou Guirassy, who entered the match with 16 goals – representing 64 percent of NJIT’s total goals on the year (25).

 

Not only that, but the Eagles scored their quintet of goals against Victor Pujades, who came into the day ranked 8th in the country with 78 saves and an ASUN-leading six shutouts. The Eagles also forced Pujades into making six saves on top of the five goals allowed.

 

“Any time you’re battling to be near the top of the table (standings) against another team trying to accomplish the same thing, you want to make a statement,” said FGCU head coach Jesse Cormier. “And the guys really made a statement that down the stretch as we enter the postseason we’re going to be a force.

 

“I thought the guys concentrated on playing a complete game,” Cormier added. “It was excellent to have the seniors be honored in a way where I thought the effort was great throughout the lineup, and that’s the way they deserve to go out. They’ve done so much for this program, and it was good to see the guys across the board play so hard for them.”

 

The Eagles dominated action beyond just the final scoreline, out-shooting NJIT, 20-6, including an 11-2 edge with shots on target. FGCU also doubled-up the Highlanders in the corner department, 6-3, as the Green and Blue are now 2-0 all-time versus the newest ASUN member (9-1 out-scored in those two meetings).

 

FGCU extended its dominant record to 44-6-6 in all ASUN regular-season games since the start of the 2010 season. Out of a possible 168 points that could have been earned in that time, the Green and Blue have claimed an impressive 138 of them (82 percent).

 

Even more impressive, dating back to October of 2008 – just the program’s second season – FGCU is now a gaudy 30-1-3 (.926 winning percentage) in home regular-season games against ASUN opponents.

 

Opening the scoring on a cool, windy day, Dennis Zapata (Orlando, Fla./University HS) had his header in the 4th minute saved, bound off the post and careen to Ruiz, who deposited his third goal of the year. Ruiz then added his second of the day and fourth of the campaign a few minutes later off assists from Robert Ferrer (Barcelona, Spain/Brevard College/IES Calamot) and Preston Kilwien (San Francisco, Calif./College Park HS).

 

Samayoa (Guatemala City, Guatemala/Colegio Valle Verde) – who scored just three goals through his first three years with the Eagles – tallied his third goal of the season in the 44th minute off a corner. Similar to FGCU’s first goal, off a saved header, Dylan Sacramento (Winnipeg, Manitoba/York University/Bill Crothers S.S.) had his header effort stopped and rebound to Samayoa.

 

Adams (Antioch, Tenn./Cane Ridge HS) delivered a stellar strike to make it 4-0 off a curving effort from about 18 yards out before Bueno (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil/Tulsa/International School of The Hague) beat the keeper 1-v-1 to his right with just 2:49 remaining to conclude the scoring.

 

Prior to the match, the Eagles honored seniors Caleb George (Tampa, Fla./Chamberlain HS), Samayoa, Eli Roubos (Toronto, Ontario/Oregon State/Northview Heights Secondary), Ferrer, Sacramento, Miguel Jaime (Denver, Colo./Cherry Creek HS), Ruiz and Jiro Barriga Toyama (Chiba, Japan/Barton CC/Chibakennrituoihama HS).

 

Current senior Kamar Marriott (Tampa, Fla./Heritage HS) was not included in the ceremony as he has not played this year due to an injury, and is expected to return next season as a redshirt senior.

 

Those eight players have been responsible over their careers for a pair of ASUN regular-season titles, two ASUN Tournament championships and a program-record 14 victories last year as the Green and Blue reached the NCAA Tournament Second Round for the first time. They will look to add to that history in the coming weeks.

 

FGCU will conclude the regular season when it heads across Alligator Alley to face FAU in Boca Raton on Tuesday, Oct. 31, at 7 p.m.

 

ASUN STANDINGS

Team

PTS

ASUN

OVERALL

No. 1 Stetson

14

4-0-2

7-6-2

No. 2 FGCU

13

4-1-1

7-5-3

No. 3 NJIT

10

3-2-1

8-7-3

No. 4 North Florida

7

2-3-1

3-9-2

No. 5 Jacksonville

7

2-3-1

4-9-1

No. 6 Lipscomb

6

2-4-0

9-7-1

USC Upstate

3

1-5-0

3-10-2

 

IRMA RELIEF DONATIONS

In the wake of Hurricane Irma, many individuals and families throughout Southwest Florida are still in desperate need of assistance. To aid in those relief efforts, FGCU Athletics will be collecting donations at all Eagle home games for the immediate future. Donation items most needed include: non-perishable food, clothing, household items and first-aid supplies. Additionally, those unable to attend upcoming home games can drop off donations in canisters located in the Alico Arena lobby. All donations will be given to those hardest hit in Lee and Collier counties.

 

FOLLOW ALONG

For up-to-the minute information and a behind-the-scenes look at the FGCU men’s soccer program, follow on Twitter @FGCU_MSoccer, Instagram @FGCU_MSoccer, Facebook /FGCUMSoccer and YouTube /FGCUAthletics.

 

HEAD COACH JESSE CORMIER

Jesse Cormier was hired in January 2017 to become just the 2nd head coach in program history. The head coach at Vermont for the previous 13 seasons, Cormier won 14 games with the Catamounts in 2016 and advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round. During his time with Vermont, Cormier guided the program to the America East Tournament in 12 of 13 seasons, making five title game appearances, winning two tournament crowns, claiming a regular-season championship and advancing to three NCAA tournaments, including a pair of Second Round appearances. Cormier has a 121-94-50 (.551 winning percentage) overall record as a head coach.

 

SUPPORT THE CAUSE

FGCU Athletics sponsors events throughout the year to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU Athletics’ charities of choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry and utilize the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.

 
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