P.J.'s Picks - Week 7 Men's Soccer
Last week I mentioned the name Daniel Haber, Cornell’s leading forward. I also mentioned that he led the league in goals, which he still does with 14. Haber, a junior from Ontario, has started all nine games this season for Cornell and has put points on the board for the Big Red in eight of those nine matches. In five games he tallied multiple goals with one hat trick against Buffalo early in the season. To call him a dominating force would be an understatement. The Big Red has won nine straight games since the beginning of the season climbing and moves on to Harvard this week in a conference match before taking on Colgate, followed by Yale.
Another dominating force this season, or should I say dominating wall, has been Connecticut’s defense. I know I have talked about UConn a few times in the past few weeks but I can’t stop giving them credit, especially their defensive front. They have only allowed three goals in the past ten games and its not all keeper Andre Blake with his 26 saves. The Huskie’s defense has been a solid brick when it comes to not allowing the ball to reach the box thanks to the defenders. Max Wasserman and Sergio Campbell have started all ten matches, logging over 1700 minutes between the pair of them. Flo Liu, Michael Mercado, and Sean Wier have also contributed to the impenetrable defense. The number one ranked Huskies also stand undefeated as they face the challenge of fellow Big East teams #7 Georgetown and #9 Marquette this week.
Georgetown and Marquette, along with Cornell and UConn, are four of the six top 25 teams that are undefeated, followed by UC Santa Barbara and Xavier. As the league enters the midseason and conference play is well under way, you can expect the rankings to start to change over the next few weeks especially when teams like UConn, Georgetown, and Marquette all have to play within the same week. As teams fight for that conference crown, we will see those rankings begin to change as well. The conference that seems to have a steady shot at the NCAA championship is the Big East with seven teams in the top 25 but that could soon be altered. There is too much to list to watch for this week as far as games and players to keep an eye on but we will see an increase in performance as the clubs battle to climb to the top of the rankings to solidify their place in the NCAA tournament.