Skyline Championship Central
KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Nov 1, 2016) – On Wednesday, Nov. 2, the top-seeded U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's soccer team will host the #4-seed Farmingdale State Rams in the semifinals of the 2016 Skyline Conference Men's Soccer Championship. Kickoff is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Brooks Stadium.
How They Got Here
The Mariners earned the Skyline Regular Season Championship and the #1 overall seed in the conference playoffs after finishing the regular season with a 10-1 record in league play. As the top seed, USMMA received a bye through the first round of the tourney into the semifinals. Merchant Marine boasts an 11-4-2 overall record under 27th-year head coach Michael Smolens and the Mariners are currently riding a seven-game winning streak.
Farmingdale State earned the #4 seed after ending the regular season with an 8-3 record in Skyline Conference action. The Rams defeated the #5-seeded Golden Eagles of St. Joseph's of Long Island, 1-0, at home this past Saturday in First Round action. FSC currently sits at 10-7 overall on the season under 14th-year head coach Chuck Schimpf and the Rams have won their last three games.
Last Time They Met
These two teams met this season back on Saturday, Oct. 15, out in Farmingdale. The Mariners struck first in the 13th minute on a tally by junior Jon Tarbox (Gettysburg, Pa.). The Rams responded just over five minutes later to tie the game on sophomore Christian Campos' marker. The scored remained tied at 1 into the halftime break.
USMMA scored three unanswered goals in a five-minute span early in the second half to cruise to a 4-1 road victory. Senior Gavin Yingling (Salisbury, Md.) had the game-winner as well as the fourth goal for Merchant Marine, while freshman Matt McCurnin (Newark, Del.) scored the Mariners' third goal.
The Mariners out-shot Farmingdale, 20-8, on the afternoon. Senior keeper Cory Maier (Hampton, Va.) recorded the victory in net, as he made one save in over 67 minutes of action. For the Rams, sophomore Lucas Mallia recorded seven saves over the full 90 minutes.
Players To Watch
For Merchant Marine, Gavin Yingling is the Skyline leader with 17 goals and 36 points. His 17 markers currently rank him 13th in the nation, while his 2.12 points per game is good for 24th in the country. He also has a conference-best six game-winning goals, a stat that ranks him ninth among all DIII players. Jon Tarbox is second in the Skyline Conference with 11 assists, while his 23 points ranks eight in the league. His 0.69 assists per game rank ninth in the nation.
At midfield, senior David Burkhardt (Cutchogue, N.Y.) has nine points on a goal and seven assists, while juniors Brandon-Rey Jumaoas (Portsmouth, R.I.) and Hannes Rogers (Weinheim, Germany) both have eight points – Jumaoas with two goals and four assists and Rogers with three goals and two assists.
The Mariner defense, led by Cory Maier in goal and junior Brian Nickel (North Canton, Ohio) and sophomore Neil Painter (New Cumberland, Pa.) on the back line, has helped lead the squad to eight shutouts this season. Maier has recorded the decision in all 17 games thus far, with four solo shutouts (and four combined), and a Skyline-best 0.95 goals against average to go along with a .776 save percentage with 52 saves.
The Rams are led offensively by sophomore forward Jovanni Parkinson, who has tallied seven goals and two assists for 16 points over 15 games played. Christian Campos and freshman Carlos Rivera are tied for second on the squad with 11 points apiece. In goal, Lucas Mallia boasts a 7-4 record with four shutouts, a .795 save percentage with 62 saves and a 1.49 goals against average.
In Other Action…
The other Skyline semifinal matchup on Wednesday features #2-seed Mount St. Mary hosting #6-seed Sage at 7 p.m up in Newburgh, N.Y. The winners of both semifinal contests will square off for the Skyline Championship on Saturday, Nov. 5.
Did You Know?
USMMA Associate Head Coach John Fitzgerald spent his collegiate playing days playing for Farmingdale State.
Farmingdale State head coach Chuck Schimpf was an assistant under Michael Smolens at Merchant Marine for two season in the mid-90's.
Live stats and a live video feed of the Skyline Seminfinal matchup on Wednesday will be available. The USMMA Sports Network's John Kelly Jr. will be on the mike to call all of the action. To access the live stats of the contest, click here. For the free live video feed, follow this link.
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