Posted: Dec 12, 2018
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AIR FORCE FALLS TO SECOND-SEED INDIANA, 2-0, IN NCAA THIRD ROUND
After earning a pair of NCAA tournament wins to make it to the round of 16, the journey for the 20th-ranked Air Force Falcons came to an end at the feet of second-seed and top-ranked Indiana, 2-0, at Armstrong Stadium in Bloomington, Ind.
The Hoosiers showed why they are the top-ranked team in the nation early on as Austin Panchot scored the first goal of the match in just the sixth minute on the assist from Trevor Swartz and Timmy Mehl. IU made it 2-0 in the 22nd minute as Mehl got a head on the ball on the far post following the cross from Swartz.
In the second half, the stout Indiana defense took over, holding Air Force to just four shots. The Falcons defense held as well, allowing just one shot on goal in the final 45 minutes.
Indiana outshot Air Force, 13-9, on the afternoon. Air Force held the advantage in corner kicks, 10-5, but managed just one shot on goal in the match. Air Force's Andrea Seazzu made a pair of saves in the match.
Air Force ends its season with a record of 17-5-0. The 17 wins is the post in program history and the class of 2019 finished their careers with a record 52 wins.
FALCONS UPSET 15TH-SEEDED DENVER, 2-1
Two first half goals was enough to send Air Force past 15th-seeded Denver in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Sunday afternoon.
Klint Parker opened up the scoring in the 13th minute after a DU defender headed the ball past the keeper and Parker finished on an open net for his eighth goal of the season. Austin Dewing made it 2-0 in the 29th minute after Air Force was awarded a penalty kick and the senior captain converted.
Denver cut the lead just 82 seconds into the second half after Moshe Perez sent in a ball on a set piece from the right side that beat Andrea Seazzu on the far post.
The Pioneers held a 15-14 advantage on shots. Seazzu finished with three saves for Air Force and the Falcons were whistled for 18 fouls, compared with 10 for Denver.
AIR FORCE WINS BIG, 4-0, IN NCAA FIRST ROUND
Scoring four goals in the second half, the 20th-ranked Air Force Falcons lived to play another match with a 4-0 win over Central Arkansas in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament. With the win, the Falcons advance to play in-state rival Denver in the second round.
The Falcons broke open the scoring in the 56th minute as Austin Dewing sent a ball across to Danny Han, who scored his fourth goal of the season to give Air Force the early 1-0 lead. Air Force struck against just over a minute later as Han intercepted a ball near midfield and passed the ball to Klint Parker, who scored his seventh goal of the season for the 2-0 lead.
Air Force made it 3-0 in the 79th minute as 2018 WAC Offensive Player of the Year Tucker Bone scored his 13th goal of the season on the assist from James D'Emidio. The final score came in the 82nd minute as James Sims converted a penalty kick for his third goal of the season.
The Falcons held a 19-11 advantage on shots, with 10 of those attempts being on target. Air Force keeper Andrea Seazzu made three saves to earn the shutout.
GCU FALLS IN SHOOTOUT AT UC IRVINE
After playing to their first tie of the season, the Grand Canyon Lopes saw their year end in a shootout at UC Irvine on Thursday night. The Lopes scored first when Jackson Jellah used the feed from Marios Andreou to score his fourth goal of the season and give GCU the 1-0 lead. UC Irvine evened it up on an own goal in the 70th minute that would eventually force extra time.
After two scoreless periods of overtime, the teams went to a shootout. After George Tasouris saved the initial try by UCI's Daniel Crisostomo, Josh Drack coverted for the early lead. After a made UCI shot in the second round, Anteater keeper Greg Patenaude made a save on the attempt by Marco Afonso to tie the shootout at one each through two rounds.
The two teams continued to trade shootout goals until the seventh round as UCI's Jalani Ambrose put the ball into the net but GCU's Malik Smith couldn't answer as UC Irvine advanced to play Stanford in the second round.
Grand Canyon finished the match with a 13-10 advantage in shots but UC Irvine helpd a 12-6 advantage in corners. The Lopes were on the attack all match, being called for six offsides.
WAC AT THE NCAA TOURNAMENT
Air Force's run to the third round of the NCAA Tournament marks the fourth time in the nine seasons of WAC men's soccer that a conference school has made it to the round of 16. Seattle U made it to the third round in 2015 before falling at Syracuse, SMU earned a 2-0 win over Dartmouth in 1997 and Fresno State defeated Washington, 2-1, in 1996. This season also marks the sixth time the WAC has received an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament, including the third time in the last four seasons.
AIR FORCE DUO NAMED UNITED SOCCER COACHES ALL-AMERICA
The United Soccer Coaches announced the 2018 NCAA Division I men's soccer All-America teams in conjunction with the College Cup banquet and a pair of Air Force players were recognized.
2018 WAC Offensive Player of the Year Tucker Bone was honored as a first-team selection for the second straight season, joining Indiana's Andrew Gutman as the only repeat selections. Bone helped lead the Falcons to the third round of the NCAA tournament, scoring 13 goals and assisting on six others.
In addition to being the seventh first-team All-America selection in WAC men's soccer history, Bone becomes the first player in league history to be named to the first team multiple times. He is the third player to be named All-America multiple years, joining SMU's Daniel Hernandez (1996, '97) and Tony Soto (1997, '98).
Teammate Austin Dewing was named a third-team selection after scoring 12 goals and assisting on five more in helping Air Force win its second-straight WAC regular season title. He concludes his outstanding career with 29 goals scored, sixth-best in WAC history, and 77 points, fifth-best in WAC history.
AIR FORCE'S BONE NAMED MAC HERMANN TROPHY SEMIFINALIST
After earning 2018 WAC Offensive Player of the Year honors and leading Air Force to the third round of the NCAA Tournament, senior midfielder Tucker Bone was been named a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy.
Bone, a cadet with Squadron 31 Grim Reapers, led Air Force with 13 goals and six assists in 22 matches played. A 2017 MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist, he helped lead the Falcons to two-straight WAC regular season titles and back-to-back trips to the NCAA tournament.
The MAC Hermann Trophy, presented by World Wide Technology, is the most coveted individual honor in NCAA Division I soccer and has been awarded annually since 1967. Most recently, Jon Bakero (Wake Forest) and Andi Sullivan (Stanford) received the award for outstanding intercollegiate performances during their senior seasons in 2017.
GCU'S DAY NAMED GOOGLE CLOUD ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICA
Grand Canyon junior defender Austin Day was named to the Google Cloud Academic All-America Third Team as announced by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
Day, a business administration major with a perfect 4.00 grade-point average, appeared in 16 matches for the Lopes this season, garnering 11 starts.
Sixteen of the 33 members of the Google Cloud Academic All-America® Division I men's soccer teams boast a perfect 4.0 GPA. The 12 members of the first team have an average GPA of 3.97, with the entire men's team holding a collective average GPA of 3.91.
THIRTEEN NAMED ALL-FAR WEST REGION
Led by a pair of Air Force cadets on the first team, a total of 13 men's soccer players from the WAC have been honored by the United Soccer Coaches as All-Far West Region honorees.
Air Force senior midfielder Tucker Bone and senior forward Austin Dewing represented the regular season champion Falcons on the first team. Bone was named WAC Offensive Player of the Year after leading Air Force to its second-straight WAC regular season title, scoring 13 goals and assisting on six others. Dewing was also an offensive weapon for the Falcons, scoring 12 goals and assisting on five more in helping Air Force advance to the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
UT Rio Grande Valley junior forward Kyle Edwards was also named a first-team selection after leading the WAC in points with 33 on 14 goals and five assists. Seattle U senior midfielder Sergio Rivas was the final WAC player on the first team, tallying 11 assist to go with four goals of his own in his final campaign on Capitol Hill.
Air Force junior goalkeeper Andrea Seazzu, Seattle U senior defender Nathan Aune, UT Rio Grande Valley senior defender Antone Jarvis, Grand Canyon sophomore midfielder Josh Drack and California Baptist sophomore forward Preston Judd were all named Second Team All-Far West Region selections. The WAC was represented on the third team by San José State senior defender Andy Rios, UNLV freshman midfielder Nico Clasen, Utah Valley junior forward Blake Frischknecht and UNLV sophomore forward Marco Gonzalez.
AIR FORCE NAMED FAR WEST REGION COACHING STAFF OF THE YEAR
The Air Force Men's Soccer coaching staff has been named United Soccer Coaches Far West Region Div. I Staff of the Year, marking the Falcon coaching staff's second-straight year winning a regional honor.
The Air Force men's soccer coaching staff, led by Doug Hill and associate head coach Chris Foster, and assisted by Hank Lewis and Tyler Amerman, led the Falcons to a record-breaking season. The Falcons posted a program-best 17 wins on the season, winning their second-straight Western Athletic Conference regular season title and second-straight NCAA tournament bid where they advanced to the Sweet 16.
GRAND CANYON WINS 2018 WAC TOURNAMENT
Behind three 1-0 shutouts from redshirt freshman and tournament MVP George Tasouris, the fourth-seeded Grand Canyon Lopes won the 2018 WAC Men's Soccer Tournament to earn the program's first trip to the NCAA Division I Tournament. The Lopes used an overtime goal by Sam Gardner to win on Wednesday against Utah Valley. Marco Afonso was the offensive hero on Friday against top-seeded Air Force and then Alex Radilla scored the game-winner on Sunday against San José State to clinch the tournament title. All four Lopes were named to the All-Tournament team with Tasouris earning MVP honors after recording a tournament-record 22 saves in three matches. Joining the four Lopes on the All-Tournament team were San José State's Max Allen, Omer Lemus and Andy Rios. UT Rio Grande Valley was represented by Rooby Dalusma and Kyle Edwards while host Seattle U also had two honored in Connor Noblat and Sergio Rivas.
WASHED, SNOWED OUT
After a lengthy lightning delay and storm that left Sorel Field unplayable, the match between Grand Canyon and Houston Baptist on Oct. 19 was abandoned in the 64th minute and was not made up. Mother nature wasn't done as the Utah Valley at Air Force match on Nov. 3 was snowed out after a brief storm hit the academy. Because of the disparity in matches played, the WAC standings and seeding for the WAC Tournament were based on winning percentage instead of points.
BY THE NUMBERS
Seattle U led the WAC in shots (375). Regular season champion Air Force held the top spot in points (151), goals (54), goals against average (0.76) and tied with Grand Canyon for least goals allowed (17). GCU also led the WAC in shutouts with nine. UT Rio Grande Valley led the league in assists (46) while San José State was tops in saves (103).
Individually, UNLV's Marco Gonzalez led the league in shots (72). UTRGV's Kyle Edwards was the leader in points (33) while CBU's Preston Judd was the leader in goals (15). SU's Sergio Rivas was the assists leader (11) and AFA's Tucker Bone and SU's Noe Meza tied for the lead in game-winning goals (5). In net, AFA's Andrea Seazzu was the leader in goals against average (0.74) while GCU's George Tasouris had the top save percentage (.860) and was the leader in shutouts (9). SJSU's Alex Clewis was the saves leader (95).
In WAC-only play, Seattle U led the league in shots (209). Air Force was the leader in points (81), goals (28), least goals allowed (8) and goals against average (0.79). UT Rio Grande Valley held the lead in assists (29) while CSU Bakersfield was the leader in saves (58). Utah Valley, Grand Canyon and UNLV all tied for the lead in shutotus with four.
Individually, UNLV's Gonzalez was the leader in shots. UTRGV's Kyle Edwards held the lead in points (22) and goals (10) while teammate William Akio had the lead in assists (7). GCU's Jackson Jellah, UTRGV's Edwards and SU's Meza tied for the lead in game-winning goals with three each. AFA's Seazzu posted the top goals against average (0.73) while GCU's Tassouris held the top save percentage (.822). SJSU's Clewis was the leader in saves with 51 while UVU's Joseph Wheelwright and GCU's Tasouris tied for the lead in shutouts (4).
A number of records were either tied or broken in 2018 as the WAC continues to establish itself as one of the top conferences in the country. UT Rio Grande Valley set the new mark for assists in a WAC season with 29 in 11 matches played. UTRGV forward Kyle Edwards tied the WAC record for goals in conference play at 10 while teammate William Akio tied the mark for assists in conference play with seven. Grand Canyon keeper George Tasouris rewrote the record for save percentage in a season at .860.
Air Force senior midfielder Tucker Bone finished his career with a WAC-record 15 assists in conference matches. Kansas City keeper Filippo Errico also set a new WAC career mark, making 122 saves in three years with the Roos and he has one season of eligibilty left at UMKC.
ON THE MAP
With a run into the third round of the NCAA tournament, Air Force finished the 2018 season ranked 12th in the final United Soccer Coaches Top 25. The Falcons were also ranked 15th in the Top Drawer Soccer Top 25.
The United Soccer Coaches switched up the regional ranking system for 2018 and the WAC is now in the Far West Region with the Pac-12 and Big West conferences. Air Force were third at the end of the regular season while Grand Canyon moved into the rankings at sixth after winning the WAC tournament. UT Rio Grande Valley sits at ninth to end the season.
REPPING THE RPI
The WAC had five teams in the top 100 of the NCAA RPI Rankings. Air Force was 26th while UT Rio Grande Valley sat at 44th. Seattle U finished the year at 46 while Grand Canyon moved to 53rd after winning the WAC tournament. San José State used a second-straight tournament final appearance to finish at 78.
Exactly half of Grand Canyon's wins in 2018 have come against top-25 programs. The Lopes opened the season with wins over then 12th-ranked Wisconsin and 20th-ranked Creighton. GCU then earned a 1-0 road win at 24th-ranked Seattle U and knocked off eighth-ranked Air Force in Phoenix. The Lopes also earned the win in the WAC tournament against 13th-ranked Air Force. It wasn't just GCU earning big wins though as the WAC played 10 Top 25 opponents from the coaches poll in non-conference play and went 8-1-1 in those games. Air Force, Grand Canyon and Seattle U had two of those wins each, San José State had a win and a tie and UNLV had the final Top 25 win.
DUO NAMED ACADEMIC ALL-DISTRICT
A pair of WAC men's soccer players were honored for their success in the classroom as well as on the field as Grand Canyon's Austin Day and Utah Valley's Zach Maas wer named Google Cloud Academic All-District by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
The duo joined nine other players from Distict 8, which encompasses eight states in the Western U.S. Day, a junior studying business adminsitration, holds a 4.00 grade point average at GCU while Maas holds a 3.95 grade point average as an exercise science and outdoor recreation major.
To be nominated, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with at least a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) at his current institution. In addition, nominated athletes must have participated in at least 50 percent of the team's games at the position listed.
AMONG THE BEST
As a conference, the WAC finished the regular season leading the nation in assists with 316 and ranked second in goals with 333. The league is also second in saves (874) and in wins (107).
PETER THE GREAT
Seattle U head coach Pete Fewing earned his 300th win on Oct. 26 against UT Rio Grande Valley. He is the 21st active coach to reach the 300-win mark, joining GCU's Schellas Hyndman and SJSU's Simon Tobin on the list.
The WAC saw 26 overtime matches this season, including seven in conference play and two in the WAC tournament. Overall, the league is 10-13-12 in extra time.
Four men's soccer teams from the Western Athletic Conference have earned the United Soccer Coaches Team Academic Award for exemplary performance in the classroom as a team during the 2017-18 academic year.
To qualify for the award, the team must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 or higher for the entire academic year. The team GPA is determined by adding every player's GPA, then dividing by the number of players.
UT Rio Grande Valley had the highest team GPA among the WAC teams honored as the Vaqueros posted an impressive 3.50 grade-point average. Grand Canyon was next with a 3.34 GPA, followed by CSU Bakersfield at 3.10 and Seattle U at 3.08.
289 men's teams across all three divisions were honored, with 191 schools receiving honors for both their men and women's team. All four men's teams from the WAC that were honored were joined by their women's programs as well.
Air Force head coach Doug Hill recorded his 100th career victory on Sept. 22 as his 10th-ranked Falcons earned a 4-1 win at Kansas City to open WAC play.
MAN OF MANY HATS
California Baptist's Preston Judd has made quite the introduction for himself in the Lancers' move to NCAA Division I. The sophomore forward has already recorded two hat tricks this season, scoring three goals in CBU's season-opening win at Saint Peter's and then repeating the feat, and adding an assist, in the Lancers' win at Gonzaga on Aug. 31.
LOTS OF LOPES
Grand Canyon recorded its first ever win over a United Soccer Coaches Top 25 team when they earned a 2-1 victory over 12th-ranked Wisconsin on opening night and there were a lot of fans in attendance to witness the feat. GCU set a new attendance record with 6,648 on Aug. 24, breaking the old mark of 6,402 from opening night of GCU Stadium in 2016.
A LOT FOR THE LANCERS TO CELEBRATE
California Baptist earned a 3-0 win over Saint Peter's in its first-ever Division I men's soccer game and the victory also happened to be the 100th career win for head coach Coe Michaelson.
SEATTLE U PICKED TO WIN 2018 TITLE
Seattle U is the preseason favorite to win the 2018 Western Athletic Conference men's soccer title in a vote of the league's 12 head coaches, who could not vote for their own team.
The Redhawks collected nine of 12 first-place votes and 119 total points to take the top spot after winning the 2017 WAC Tournament and advancing to the second round of the NCAA tournament. UNLV was selected second with 105 points, just one tick ahead of defending regular season champion Air Force, who earned the remaining three first-place votes and 104 points overall. Tournament Through 9/10ist San José State was selected fourth with 84 points, followed by Utah Valley in fifth with 79 points and Grand Canyon in sixth with 75 points. CSU Bakersfield was selected seventh with 55 points, followed by UT Rio Grande Valley in eighth, Kansas City in ninth, newcomer California Baptist in 10th, Houston Baptist in 11th and UIW in 12th.
AUNE, RIVAS HIGHLIGHT PRESEASON ALL-WAC SQUAD
Seattle U midfielder Sergio Rivas and defender Nathan Aune were selected as WAC Preseason Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year respectively in a vote of the league's 12 head coaches, who could not vote for their own players.
Rivas and Aune are joined on the Preseason All-WAC squad by teammates Anthony Ayala and Josh Adachi. UNLV has three players as forward Marco Gonzalez, midfielder Timo Mehlich and defender Adam Musovski were honored. Air Force had two selected as forwards Tucker Bone and Austin Dewing represented the Falcons. Grand Canyon midfielder Josh Drack and San José State defender Andy Rios rounded out the 11-member team.
AUNE, BONE NAMED TO MAC HERMANN WATCH LIST
Seattle U's Nathan Aune and Air Force's Tucker Bone are among those on the watch list for the 2018 Missouri Athletic Club's (MAC) Hermann Trophy. Aune was the 2017 WAC Defensive Player of the Year and a second-team All-American as a junior. Bone was a semifinalist for the 2017 MAC Hermann Trophy as he earned first-team All-American honors as a junior.
QUARTET EARNS PRESEASON HONORS
Air Force forward Tucker Bone and Seattle U midfielder Sergio Rivas were both named to the Top Drawer Soccer Preseason Best XI First Team. Seattle U defender Nathan Aune was a second-team selection while teammate Declan McGlynn was named to the TDS Best XI Freshman Team. In addition, both Aune and Bone were named to the Soccer American Preseason Men's College Best XI.
WELCOME TO THE WAC
California Baptist joins the Western Athletic Conference as a full-time member in 2018-19. The Lancers won the NCAA Division II Learfield Cup in 2017-18. They will begin their four year transition process to Division 1. This will make them ineligible to compete in post season tournaments (WAC and NCAA) until 2022-2023 season.
PLAYING THE BEST
The WAC has 19 non-conference games against participants from the 2017 NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament including rematches of all three games the WAC played in the national tournament last season. Air Force is among those with a rematch, facing Virginia Tech in a neutral-site match on opening night at James Madison. Seattle hosts its second-round opponent Akron on Sep. 7 and then takes on rival and first-round opponent Washington on Sep. 23. Opening night will also feature San José State traveling to defending national champion Stanford and Grand Canyon hosting Wisconsin. Akron will also make the trip to Phoenix on Sep. 20 to take on the Lopes.