Bearcats Open With NKU, Wright State
Aug. 28, 2014

vs. NKU/Wright State

2014 Season Preview with Coach Dayes Interview | Game Notes
at Northern Kentucky: Live Stats | Webcast (Free)
vs. Wright State: Gametracker | BearcatsTV

The University of Cincinnati men's soccer team opens its 2014 season with a pair of regional opponents. The Bearcats travel across the Ohio River for the season opener at Northern Kentucky on Friday, Aug. 29 (7:00 p.m.) before hosting Wright State at Gettler Stadium on Monday, Sept. 1 (7:00 p.m.).

Live stats for both matches can be found on

The Wright State match can be seen on BearcatsTV, via BearcatsTV is now a part of College Sports Live, which offers coverage of over 100 schools as part of the CBS Interactive family. Subscriptions cost just $9.95 per month or $99.95 for the year and give access to live and on-demand content across the network. For more information or to subscribe, visit

The Bearcats swept both of their exhibition matches in preparation for the 2014 campaign, defeating Cincinnati State, 5-1, and taking a 4-1 decision at Evansville. Against the Surge, John Manga (Louisville, Ky./Henry Clay) led the way with a pair of goals, while Richardo Israel (Free Town, Jamaica/Lennon), Austin Morley (Aberdeenshire, Scotland/The Gordon Schools) and Rantz Bourgeois (St. Amant, La./St. Amant) also scored. Alan Rovira earned Man of the Match honors by assisting on three of the goals. At Evansville, the Bearcats netted four goals against a team they defeated 2-0 last season. After allowing an early goal on a PK, Manga evened things up before Emmanuel Appiah (Westerville, Ohio/Westerville Central) scored the game winner in the 34th minute. Terence Carter (London, England/London Nautical/Northeastern) and Ashani Walker (Kingston, Jamaica/Jamaica College) also scored.

With over 80-percent of their scoring and 300-plus career starts returning in 2014, the Bearcats boast one of the most experienced teams in the nation. UC returns 81.3% of its goal scoring from a season ago, a total which ranks 13th nationally and tops in the American Athletic Conference. In addition, the roster features a combined 308 career starts entering the season. That makes UC one of just seven schools in the country to have logged at least 300 career starts.

Percent of Scoring Returning

Career Starts Returning

Rank School % Rank School No.
1. SIU Edwardsville 100.0 1. North Carolina 560
2. Evansville 97.1 2. Evansville 422
3. Syracuse 96.7 3. Syracuse 409
4. North Carolina 89.5 4. Virginia 363
5. Missouri State 88.2 5. UNLV 345
6. Virginia/Buffalo 86.6 6. Georgia State 338
8. NJIT/Duke 84.0 7. Cincinnati 308
10. Florida Int'l 81.5      
11. UAB 81.4      
12. Cincinnati 81.3      
13. UConn 80.6      
14. South Carolina 80.0      

Northern Kentucky returns 18 players from a team which went 9-4-6 a season ago, including a 5-2-1 finish in the Atlantic Sun which was good for a second-place tie. The Norse set an NCAA record by playing overtime in 11 matches in 2013. The extra time equated out to two full matches. Goalkeeper A.J. Fleak was a major reason the Norse were in every game, earning second team All-Atlantic Sun honors thanks to a 0.96 goals against average. NKU has completed is transitional period to NCAA Division I and is eligible for postseason play for the first time since winning the Division II national title in 2010. The Norse were picked to finish tied for third in the Atlantic Sun Coaches Preseason Poll. NKU played a pair of scoreless draws in the exhibition season against Kentucky and at Belmont.

Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky have played once with both schools as NCAA Division I members, a 1-1 draw at Gettler Stadium last season. Ashani Walker (Kingston, Jamaica/Jamaica College) scored for UC in the 22nd minute before NKU's Caleb Eastham equalized the score in the 76th minute. Alex Gill (Beavercreek, Ohio/Beavercreek) made eight saves in the contest. The teams met annually from 1983-87, with NKU taking the first meeting in `83 before UC won the next four matches.

Wright State posted a 6-11-2 record a season ago, including a 3-4 mark in the Horizon League. The Raiders are led by four preseason All-Horizon selections. Brett Elder led the team in goals (seven) and points (13) last season. Emeke Ononye started all 19 matches on defense and earned second team all-league honors last season. Eric Lynch was second in the conference with eight assists last year and Jake Stovall was a Horizon All-Freshman team selection a year ago. The Raiders split their exhibition contests, falling 2-0 at Virginia Tech before winning 2-1 at No. 12 Marquette. Wright State opens their 2014 season on Friday, Aug. 29, with a home game versus Kentucky before visiting Cincinnati on Monday, Sept. 1.

Monday's home opener will be the 24th meeting between Cincinnati and Wright State, with the Bearcats holding a 12-9-2 advantage in the series. The teams played on 21 occasions between 1979-2001, but have played just twice since. The Bearcats have taken both recent matches, winning a 2-1 match in 2005 and a 2-0 match in 2009, both at Gettler Stadium. All-time, UC has won eight of 11 matches in Cincinnati, with a pair of draws and just one Raider victory in the Queen City.

Cincinnati and Wright State have a few connections, starting with 14th-year Cincinnati head coach Hylton Dayes. Dayes played collegiately at Wright State and is one of the most successful players in its history. He was the first athlete in school history to earn All-America honors all four years and is one of just three student-athletes to have his jersey retired at the school. Playing defense for the Raiders, Dayes remains the only First Team All-American in men's soccer history at Wright State. In addition, former Bearcats keeper Matt Williams in his first season as goalkeepers coach for Wright State. Williams was a three-year starter and set the program record for goals against average (0.68) in 2010 under the direction of current UC goalkeepers coach, Chris Black.

Season tickets for 2014 can be purchased for as little $10 ($1.25 per match). For more information, visit or call 1-877-CATS-TIX. Keep up with the UC men's soccer team @UCMSoccer.

The Wright State match is a White Out and the 2014 team poster and schedule cards will be available. Bearcats sunglasses will also be given away to early-arriving fans at the gate. The match is part of the athletics department's Faculty/Staff Appreciation program. UC faculty and staff will be admitted free with their UC ID card, with their guests costing just $1.00.