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2013 College Cup - The Final Four - Tale Of The Tape

"The more things change, the more they remain the same."  When french journalist Jean-Baptiste Alkphonse Kerr coined that phrase back in 1839 he clearly didn't have college soccer in mind.  However when you look at what took place in the 2013 regular season and compare it to what has transpired in the 2013 NCAA Tournament on the road to the College Cup in Philadelphia there are some similarities.

Regular season play was different this year with the teams on the west coast clearly making their presence known on the national scene as reflected in the fact that three of the top four seeds in the NCAA Tournament (UCLA, Washington, and California) were awarded to teams on the left coast.  In addition throughout the season there was a great deal of balance in conference play across the country  The balance in conference play was likely impacted by the large number of conference realignments that went into effect this year.  Conference realignments are driven by a lot of different factors but the fact that schools join conferences that include programs with similar goals and values tends to create balance and competitiveness from top to bottom within conferences.

Based on what happened during the regular season it appeared that the west coast would be well represented in the Final Four.  It also appeard that the balance that was displayed throughout the regular season would have resulted in a lot of upsets or at the very least a lot of matches requiring overtime and penalty kick shootouts to determine who advanced in NCAA Tourney play.  The strong showing of west coast teams during regular season play didn't translate into representation at the College Cup and despite the balance that existed in regular season play there were not a lot of upsets in the NCAA Tourney and only a few matches required penalty kicks to determine who advanced.  One reflection of the balance that existed is the fact that during regular season play Notre Dame and Connecticut each had six ties, Maryland, Wake Forest and North Carolina had five each, and Washington and UCLA each had four.

The four team College Cup field consists of #5 seeded Maryland, #3 seeded Notre Dame, and #8 seeded Virginia from the Atlantic Coast Conference and #7 seeded New Mexico from Conference USA.  Number one seeded UCLA fell in the Sweet Sixteen, #2 seeded Washington and #4 seeded California fell in the Elite Eight.  Nonetheless it was a great season for the west coast and an indication of continued success in he future.  Likewise the conference realingments created a lot of new and interesting match-ups and rivalries that will continue in the future.  But as Jean-Baptiste eluded despite the changes to the college soccer landscape that took place during the regular season a lot of things remained the same along the road to the College Cup.

2013 College Cup - The Final Four - Tale Of The Tape

The Final Four Maryland Virginia  Notre Dame New Mexico
The Participants
Overall Record 16-3-5 13-5-5 15-1-6 14-5-2
Conference ACC ACC ACC CUSA

Conference Record

Regular Season Finish

7-1-3

Tie 1st

4-3-4

5th

7-1-3

Tie 1st

7-1-1

1st

Record Away From Home

Record At Neutral Site

4-1-4

5-0-0

3-2-2

0-1-1

6-0-1

1-0-2

6-1-1

0-1-0

Coach

Sasho Cirovski

George Gelnovatch

Bobby Clark

Jeremy Fishbein

Years At Helm 21 18 13 12
NCAA Seed 5 8 3 7
CSN Ranking - End Of Regular Season 3 13 4 23
Goals Scored 50 44 43 35
Goals Allowed 28 23 17 18
Number Shutouts 8 10 9 10
Unbeaten Streak 10 3 8 3
Last Loss Wake Forest (3-4) Maryland (0-1) Virginia (0-2) Tulsa (0-3)
Power Rating (RPI) 4 9 3 11
Strength Multi-Dimensional Attack Movement/Combinations Organization/Quickness Defense/Tenacity
How They Beat You Pressure Determination Fundamentals Unified Team
Top Scorer

Patrick Mullins

(16g, 8a)

Eric Bird

(7g, 5a)

Harrison Shipp

(12g, 8a)

James Rogers

(7g, 6a)

Key Distributor Tsubasa Endoh Jordan Allen Patrick Hodan Michael Calderon
Key Defender Mikey Ambrose Scott Thomsen G. Van De Casteele Kyle Venter
Goalkeeper

Zack Steffen

Freshman

1.11 GAA

Calle Brown

RS Junior

0.77 GAA

 

Patrick Wall

Senior

0.73 GAA

 

Michael Lisch

Senior

0.79 GAA

Don't Underestimate Dan Metzger Ryan Zinkhan

Nick Besler 

Ben McKendry
Freshman To Watch

Michael Sauers - MF

Zack Steffen - Goal

Jordan Allen - MF N/A

Christopher Wehan - MF

Niko Hansen - Forward

Where They Have The Edge Up-Top Midfield Up-Top Backline
Wildcard

Schillo Tshuma

(6g, 1a)

Darius Madison

(6g, 3a)

Vince Cicciarelli

(6g, 2a)

 

Oneil Fisher

(1g, 2a)

 

Last Trip To College Cup 2012 2009 None 2005
The Road Traveled

Providence 3-1 (home)

UC Irvine 1-0 (home)

California 2-1 (away)

St. John's 2-0 (home)

Marquette 3-1 (home)

Connecticut 2-1 (home)

Wisconsin 4-0 (home)

Wake Forest 4-2 (home)

Michigan State 2-1 (home)

George Mason 1-0 (home)

Penn State 2-0 (home)

Washington 1-0 (away)

The Match-Ups - Notre Dame vs. New Mexico - 5:00 P.M. EST, Friday December 13

                          Virginia vs. Maryland - 7:30 P.M. EST, Friday December 13  

Both matches will be televised live on ESPNU