DePaul Faces Big Challenge Wednesday at No. 10/9 Georgetown
Oct. 22, 2013
CHICAGO - After you're finished with one challenge, there's often a bigger one coming up when you compete in one of the country's best soccer conferences.
That is the task facing DePaul heading into a 2 p.m. match on Wednesday at No. 9/10 Georgetown in a BIG EAST confrontation.
After a tough loss at Seton Hall last Saturday, here comes Georgetown (10-3-1, 3-1-1 in the BIG EAST) with a 6-1-1 mark at Shaw Field.
The Hoyas, who finished second in the NCAA tournament last year, lead the BIG EAST in goals scored, points and fewest goals allowed.
Brandon Allen has nine goals and three assists while Steve Neumann has eight goals and four assists. Alex Muyl has contributed three goals and six assists.
Georgetown comes in with a lofty No. 6 rating in the RPI and has outscored its opponents 28-8. At one point earlier in the season, four BIG EAST teams were ranked among the top 16 in the NSCAA/Continental Tire national poll.
"Georgetown and the BIG EAST provide us with the opportunity to play against the best," said DePaul soccer coach Craig Blazer. "That's a big reason why recruits come to DePaul. They know they'll get a chance to prove themselves against the best."
DePaul (4-8-2, 0-4-1) has played well in their last three visits to Washington, D.C.
In 2011, the Blue Demons trailed No. 17 Georgetown 1-0 and couldn't come up with the equalizer for 89 minutes. With 38 seconds left, the Hoyas scored an insurance goal.
In 2009, goalkeeper Joe Ferrari made two game-changing saves on penalty kicks in a shootout won by DePaul that advanced the Blue Demons to the BIG EAST quarterfinals.
In 2008, Blazer's team fell 1-0 to No. 22 Georgetown.
Against ranked teams this season, DePaul has one tie, two losses in double overtime, one loss in overtime and a loss in regulation time.
"We have quality players on our team who have performed well against ranked teams," Blazer said. "We're always trying to recruit the best players and then coach them up. This is an exciting part of the process.
"When it comes to high-caliber soccer, our conference is off the charts. Every game is its own great battle."
After the trip to Georgetown, DePaul comes home for a 1 p.m. BIG EAST match on Saturday against a Villanova team that has won three in a row.
Last week, the Wildcats went into Omaha, Neb. and pulled off a 1-0 upset against a Creighton powerhouse that was ranked No. 12 at the time.
Villanova (7-6-1, 2-3-0) is led by Padraic McCullaugh with three goals and Sean Sheridan with five assists. The balanced Wildcat offense has seen 11 different players find the back of the net this season.