One week into the year, and no one's scored on UB yet!
Alright, that will change come Friday evening, unless the volleyball team plays the greatest game of all time. But for now, all we have to hang our hats on are some pret-ty good performances from our soccer teams.
This is your Bulls Soccer Roundup
Men's Soccer hasn't played any official games yet, but in three exhibitions against varying levels of competition they have gone 3-0-0 while outscoring their opponents 14-0. Of particular note is their last preseason tune up, in which they defeated D-III power University of Rochester 2-0 on the strength of two goals from Austin Place.
Seven of the Bulls' fourteen preseason goals came from six different players in a romp of Genesee Community College:
BATAVIA, NY - The University at Buffalo men's soccer team opened up their 2014 campaign with an impressive 7-0 victory over Genesee Community College in the Bulls season opening exhibition match played Sunday afternoon in Batavia. UB had six different players record at least one goal for the game.
Another high-flying game saw a 5-0 win for UB, and a breakout performance from freshman Abdulla Al-Kalisy, who scored three goals against Seton Hill:
Following a pair of saves by freshman goalkeeper Cameron Hogg to keep the Bulls ahead, fellow freshman Abdulla Al-Kalisy scored his first of three goals after a perfect pass from Cicerone gave him a wide open net.
Pay attention to those two names: I've been spouting off about Cicerone and Hanson, but Hogg and Al-Kalisy look just as important. Both are from New Zealand, where Hogg is a member of the National U-20 team. New Zealand isn't exactly a powerhouse, but Hogg has been able to step in a push veteran keeper Waleed Cassis for playing time.
Similarly, Al-Kalisy has burst onto the scene. The Bulls are full of underclassmen, but Al-Kalisy has shone especially bright, scoring five goals in two games and forcing Rochester to devote fewer defensive resources to Russell Cicerone.
Speaking of Rochester, we covered UB's 2-0 win in depth earlier this week:
[W]ith all of our attention on Cicerone and Hanson after the FC Buffalo season, he quietly potted FIVE goals in the preseason. Take it from me - [Al-Kalisy] can absolutely fly. Opposing defenses are not going to be able to key in on Cicerone this year, and even if they don't, Al-Kalisy is going to make them pay.
Finally on the men's side, 121merrimac tracked down a favorable team preview from the MAC itself. People are noticing the young talent Coach Riddle is bringing in:
With 19 of 24 players on the roster underclassman, the Bulls will be a conference power for years to come.
The young Bulls, however, didn't get much love from the five other coaches in the conference:
2014 Men's Soccer Preseason Poll (First place votes) 1. Akron (4) 2. West Virginia (1) 3. Western Michigan (1) 4. Northern Illinois 5. Bowling Green 6. Buffalo
Women's Soccer has indeed gotten their season started, and happily owns the first two wins for any UB team this year. Furthermore, they're 2-0-0 for the first time since 2011. We covered the season opener, a 1-0 victory over St. Bonaventure, with a dedicated article:
The Women's Soccer team got the year started on the right foot with their 1-0 win over St. Bonaventure today at UB Stadium, bolstered by a goal from freshman Julia Benati and a shutout from freshman goalkeeper Laura Dougall. The win also marked the first in new coach Shawn Burke's career.
On Sunday, the ladies followed up one Big 4 victory with another, this time a 2-0 win over Canisius, in which the Golden Griffins had no answer for UB anywhere on the field and were lucky to only allow two goals, scored by Celina Carrero and Megan Abman:
For the game, the Bulls completely dominated the Golden Griffins as they held the 36-11 advantage in shots and the 11-5 advantage in corner kicks. Nine of the Bulls 11 starter recorded at least one shot including a team-high nine shot attempts by Roberts.
The starter in net for both these wins was true freshman Laura Dougall, who has stepped right from a lauded prep career in Ontario into the starting role here in Buffalo. She's benefiting from an established and powerful defense in front of her, but made seven saves to preserve the shutout against Canisius and was yesterday named MAC Defensive Player of the Week.
Minutes after a commenter called her 'one of the best in her age bracket from Canada,' this comes down the line. We'll let two big saves in her first two games speak for themselves:
Stats: Three Bulls scored a goal this week: Julia Benati, Megan Abman, and Celina Carerro. Laura Dougall played all 180 minutes in net and did not allow a goal on 11 or 12 shots.
Around the MAC:
Most women's teams around the conference have also played two games. Miami, Ball State, and Eastern Michigan are also undefeated, while Kent State on Sunday lost 1-0 to St. Bonaventure after UB toppled the Bonnies.
None of the conference's six men's teams opens regular season play until this Friday.
This Week in Bull:
Women's soccer travels to Duquesne on Friday at 7 PM, and hosts Drexel on Sunday at noon. UBBulls.com isn't listing any video feed for the road game, but should have an option on Sunday.
Men's soccer head to sunny San Diego, a beautiful city with a mysterious name. Scholars maintain that its translation was lost hundreds of years ago. The gents also play at 7 on Friday and noon on Saturday, though I don't 100% trust those times or know which time zone they're referring to.
121merrimac has some info on following these games:
It looks like there will be a free video stream over at usdtoreros dot com. UB says it'll be a 7:00 (est) start time on Friday, but USD claims 8:00...
SDSU ...While it doesn't look promising for video, there should be a decent stat tracker at goaztecs dot com.