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Sunday, September 02, 2007

MU Men's Soccer - Hawks hang with Wake Forest but fall, 2-0

By TONY GRAHAM
STAFF WRITER


Two goals in less than two minutes late in the first half by Wake Forest Sunday foiled a bid
by the Monmouth University men's soccer team to post a second consecutive upset in the Nike
Carolina Classic in Chapel Hill, N.C.

""I would say 90 percent of the teams in the country would be happy with a one and one
record coming down to this tournament ,'' said Robert McCourt, coach of Monmouth, after it
bowed 2-0 to the No. 3 Deamon Deacons.

Wake Forest (2-0) is coming off a 2006 season in which it fell in the College Cup
semifinals on penalty kicks to eventual champion UC Santa Barbara after winning the Atlantic
Coast Conference regular season championship.

Friday night Monmouth shocked No. 16 North Carolina, 1-0, on a second half goal by senior Damon Wilson and seven saves by senior keeper Daniel Schenkel.

Sunday Cody Arnoux, a sophomore forward from Wilmington, N.C., broke a scoreless tie on a
strike at 40:20 and 1:47 later headed in a corner kick from Sam Cronin.

""We had two mental let downs just before the half and they punished us for it,'' said
McCourt.

Senior Tom Gray (Middletown South) had three shots for Monmouth which was outshot 11-4 as
Schenkel made four saves.

""I felt like we battled pretty hard in the early stages of the first half and we
certainly battled very hard in the second,'' said McCourt. ""In the end we just didn't have
enough to keep up with them.

""I'm extremely proud of our effort in this tournament and it was a tremendous student
athlete experience for the kids.''

Wake Forest senior goalie Brian Edwards, who set a school record with 13 shutouts in 2006,
also made four saves Sunday.

Schenkel, Wilson, and and senior Michael Millar were named to the All Tournament Team.

Monmouth Friday opens a stretch where it plays a stretch of nine of 10 games at home when
it hosts Manhattan (0-1) 4 p.m. in a non-conference game.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Hit a Free Throw said...

Tony,

It's such a shame that the soccer win is not that big of a deal here around campus. I'm really sure how it could have been promoted that we beat such a tough nationally ranked team and held our own against the now #1 team in the country. I guess as long as some of us are talking about it that is better than no one talking about it. Once again to any bloggers out there that have not made a trip to campus to see a soccer game, you will be very impressed by our mens team.

2:11 PM, September 04, 2007  
Blogger Tony Graham said...

Soccer is a very tough sell at least in this part of the country (and I guess most places).

Having said that - and if MU continues to win - and they have a ton of home games up coming - I think more and more people will be drawn into following this program...They certainly deserve it.

Can you imagine if MU men's hoops ever opened a season beating UNC and then losing close to Wake Forest??.

Or this year beating UND and then playing tough in the rest of the Paradise Jam??

This was absolutely equivalent to something like that...

2:29 PM, September 04, 2007  
Anonymous Hit a Free Throw said...

Exactly! I do hope we can get more people to come out and support this fantastic mens program.

4:08 PM, September 04, 2007  
Anonymous Tired of Complaints said...

Tony-

I understand that it was a huge win by the Hawks, but what i dont understand is why all these soccer people just dont get that the interest in thier sport just isnt here. In the rest of the world, yes, soccer is huge. In America it just isnt. We dont have the track fans and parents writing on this blog all the time about how sad it is that track doesnt get a ton of attention in NJ or West Long Branch. Give up already, it was a great win and fans of Monmouth Athletics will certainly enjoy it and continue to support and congratulate the team. I mean, football only averages 2500 people per game and that is the biggest sport in the country. Look at baseball, they kept it close in the NCAA regional and you dont hear the baseball people constantly complaining. If you want to have a huge number of people get excited about soccer- move to Central America or Europe.
If not, give some money to McCourt's program, go to all the games and tell your family and friends about how good the soccer at MU is.

5:54 PM, September 04, 2007  
Blogger Tony Graham said...

Maybe MU can promote these home games and inject a little more campus awareness and spirit. I'm guessing here, but that probably has not been under taken with the possible exception of the NEC Tournament.

Keep winning and crowds will rise....

I just checked and none of the polls that I saw have been updated yet, so we'll see if MU pulls of a national ranking out of this weekend's showing...

9:23 PM, September 04, 2007  
Anonymous Hit a Free Throw said...

To Tired of Complaints:
I get your point and understand that soccer is not a major sport here in the US. But the point that I was trying to make is that Monmouth University beat a nationally ranked "well known" elite program and there was little to no fanfare whatsoever. I'm not sure if you read the article about the game but some how 1,500 fans were in the stands to watch the game. Do you think they were all South Americans? Some how they can gather 1,500 people to come and watch a sport that is not basketball or football. Do you think they only invited South Americans to the match?
Maybe the track, baseball and soccer parents need to get together and demand that the athletic department do a better job of promoting these sports that have gained consistent national attention. Just saying "give it up" is not the way to solve the problem.
Maybe you should make more comments about the baseball and track successes when it is posted on this blog, write a letter to Marilyn and voice your oppinion about your disatisfation with the way track and basetball are promoted. Actions speak louder than words, moving to South America only means you've given up.

PS.
I donate money to Rob's program.

10:05 AM, September 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tony; If we "Give up already" Soccer will never grow.
The more people we get to come and learn about the game they will begin to see what the rest of the world has been enjoying.
The games in North Carolina were a terrific step for our program to gain some national attention and the boys stepped up well. I'm sure it also showed Coach McCourt some things that still need work, but that is a never ending process.
your coverage ,support and opinions are apprecieated, but give up ?? "Never, Ever, Ever Quit"

10:51 AM, September 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Tired of Complaints
I think you have hit at the heart of a complaint amongst "traditional American" sports fans that soccer is un-American. There is an element of truth but consider the following. In today's global economy there are no "American" sports with the exception of Football now the Europe NFL has collapsed. Basketball and Baseball are alive and well in many countries worldwide. There ar 24 million soccer players in the country, 3 million of which are registered youth players, a professional league with avg attendance over 14,000(higher then some MLB franchises). You have a stadium being built North of us costing over $100 million and soccer specific. There is another proposed South of us (Philly Franchise) also a $100 million soccer specific stadium. I believe that there is a feeling that soccer is trying to be the # 1 sport in the country, which as a soccer fan I will tell you it is not nor are we trying to be. But as far as us going to South America...we don't meed to....we have a healthy set-up now and growing in America.

6:20 PM, September 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The win last weekend was huge by a school the size of Monmouth.
This is an opportune time for the school to continue to support the program and equal the vision they had in bringing aboard Coach McCourt in the first place. Kudos to the administration for having a nationally pedigree'd coach on staff.
The only caveat is that other even more ambitous administrators in more "established" soccer schools will not be blind to the success of the program and lure McCourt away.
Keep quality people at the school. let's to do what we can to make them stay.

6:27 PM, September 05, 2007  
Blogger Tony Graham said...

Click here for latest men's college soccer poll:

http://www.ncaasports.com/soccer/mens/polls/divi-nscaa..

MU now technically No. 31 (behind McCourt's old school, VCU)

This from last poster "This is an opportune time for the school to continue to support the program and equal the vision they had in bringing aboard Coach McCourt in the first place. Kudos to the administration for having a nationally pedigree'd coach on staff.''

I don't know if the admin. had the "vision" you allude to. They did a great job, though, in getting McCourt - who was probably- by far and I'm guessing here - the most qualified applicant.

9:57 PM, September 05, 2007  
Blogger Tony Graham said...

Actually MU's ranking would be No. 30...ahead of North Carolina. Who would have thought that someday MU would be ranked ahead of UNC in a major sport....Quite the accomplishment..

10:04 PM, September 05, 2007  

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