Saint Louis / UNC Region Men's Soccer 1st and 2nd Round Breakdowns

Saint Louis / North Carolina Region 1st and 2nd Round Breakdowns

For now, North Carolina’s road back to the College Cup is not horribly difficult. Saint Louis is playing great soccer right now, but their potent offense may not be able to get much going against the Tar Heel defense. But there are a couple sleepers to watch in this region as well. Old Dominion did not make any noise in the CAA Tournament since they were ineligible, so they are flying under the radar a bit and St. John’s can beat anybody on any given day thanks to keeper Rafael Diaz.


#9 North Carolina vs. Old Dominion/UMBC

UMBC pulled off a first round upset in 2010 when they knocked off Princeton before falling to William & Mary. It will take another upset for the Retrievers to reach the second round this year too. But they do have the talent to pull it off. Striker Pete Caringi tallied 14 goals so far on the season and is always a threat to hit the back of the net. Fellow junior, keeper Phil Saunders, has had a great season and has allowed just .81 goals per game while tallying eight shutouts. But the Monarchs should be too much for UMBC. Coach Alan Dawson has a few great goal scorers of his own. Forwards Tim Hopkinson and Yannick Smith are a couple of the best in the conference and midfielder Chris Harmon tallied nine goals and six assists on the season.

The winner of ODU and UMBC will go on to face North Carolina. If it is Old Dominion, this will be a great matchup of the Monarchs offense against the Tar Heel defense. Tar Heel keeper Scott Goodwin has had an amazing campaign and UNC will go far if he remains on his game. But like most matchups of a great offense and a great defense, it will likely come down to the other side. Can the ODU defense step up and stop North Carolina’s plethora of goal scoring threats?


#8 Saint Louis vs. St. John's/Fairleigh Dickinson

Fairleigh Dickinson is back in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2008. It has been ten years since the Knights won a tournament game. And that drought will probably not end this year against St. John’s. However, the Knights do have a very good defense and a very good keeper in Jacob Lissek. They should be able to stay in the game against the Red Storm since St. John’s is not known for their high scoring exploits. FDU will try and keep it close and stick around and at that point anything can happen.

Saint Louis has a good defense too, but they are known for their offense. Whether it is St. John’s or Fairleigh Dickinson facing off against Saint Louis, they will try and keep the Billikens offense under wraps. With Robbie Kristo, Adnan Gabeljic, Alex Sweetin and Kingsley Bryce on the pitch, that will not be an easy task for either squad.


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