Spartan Soccer Hosts Notre Dame
No. 7 MSU soccer takes on No. 17 Notre Dame under the lights on Tuesday.
EAST LANSING, Mich. - No. 7 Michigan State men’s soccer (11-2-2, 5-0-2 B1G) concludes regular-season this week with a pair of Top 20 match-ups, opening with a non-conference clash with No. 17 Notre Dame on Tuesday, Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. (ET) under the lights of DeMartin Stadium. The 17th-ranked Fighting Irish bring a 9-4-2 overall and 3-2-2 ACC record into Tuesday’s clash with the Spartans after a scoreless draw with No. 15 Duke last Friday.
MSU Notes vs. Notre Dame | Notre Dame Notes
The Spartans then wrap regular-season action with a B1G showdown with No. 2 Indiana on Sunday, Oct. 29 at 3 p.m. at DeMartin.
MSU’s five B1G wins ties a school record for most conference wins, matching the 2016 and 2008 squads. The win helps the Spartans keep pace in the league standings with Maryland (5-0-2) and Indiana (4-0-2), and MSU can set a new school record and clinch at least a share of the B1G title facing Indiana in the regular-season finale on Sunday.
SCOUTING REPORT: NOTRE DAME
The 12th-ranked Fighting Irish bring a 9-4-2 overall and 3-2-2 ACC record into Tuesday’s clash with the Spartans after a scoreless draw with No. 15 Duke last Friday. The draw with Duke was Notre Dame’s third-straight match without a goal, after losing to Pittsburgh, 1-0, on Oct. 13 and 2-0 to No. 13 Akron on Oct. 17 before the scoreless draw with No. 15 Duke.
Jon Gallagher leads the Irish in scoring with 22 points on 10 goals and two assists. Jeff Farina adds 17 points (six points, five assists), while Felicien Dumas adds 10 points (two goals, team-leading five assists). Gallagher and Farina share the team lead with three game-winning goals apiece. Netminder Chris Hubbard has played every minute in goal for the Irish, posting a 0.83 GAA by allowing 13 goals, making 38 saves and tallying four shutouts.
Overall, Michigan State is 7-17-6 all-time against Notre Dame, with the Spartans and Irish level in the last three meetings at 1-1-1.
Last season, freshman forward Michael Beckett scored his first career goal as No. 13 Michigan State stopped No. 12 Notre Dame, 1-0, on Oct. 25 at UND’s Alumni Stadium. Beckett found the back of the net for the only goal of the game in the 74th minute. Sophomore forward Ryan Sierakowski delivered a great ball to Beckett, whose header slipped past substitute goalkeeper Ryan Krutz, who replaced starter Chris Hubbard after an injury in the 67th minute. The Spartans dealt the Irish their first home loss last season and was MSU’s first win against UND since 2010. It was also Michigan State’s third win over a ranked opposition of 2016.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Spartans 5-0-2 Big Ten start matches the 2016 and 2008 squads for most B1G wins in the season.
TAKING ON THE HOOSIER STATE
The Spartans end the regular season with a pair of games against ranked teams from the Hoosier state. After taking on No. 17 Notre Dame on Tuesday, Oct. 24, the Spartans will end the Big Ten regular season hosting No. 2 Indiana on Sunday, Oct. 29 at 3 p.m. on ESPNU. The Spartans will look to remain undefeated at DeMartin Stadium for the second-straight season.
Michigan State has reached a loaded portion of its schedule. Western Michigan was the sixth-straight ranked team that the Spartans have faced, taking on No. 16 Ohio State, No. 25 Akron, No. 19 Bowling Green, No. 18 Michigan and No. 3 Maryland. MSU is 4-1-1 against ranked squads.
MSU head coach Damon Rensing reached a coaching milestone. With the win against Penn State on Oct. 14, the Spartan leader reached 100 career wins. Overall, he is now 101-60-24 at MSU.
KEEPERS KEEPING IT CLEAN
Tuesday’s match-up features two of the top goalkeepers in the nation as MSU redshirt-junior Jimmy Hague is tied for second in the NCAA in shutouts (10), as well as seventh in goals against average (0.514), while UND graduate senior Chris Hubbard is 32nd in the country in goals against average (0.830) and has four shutouts.
In this week’s RPI rankings, Michigan State are eighth-ranked. The Spartans tough schedule included six-straight games. MSU is one of three teams B1G ranked in the top 15 along with fifth-ranked Maryland and No. 12-ranked Indiana. Michigan is also in the top-20, standing No. 17.
CLIMBING THE CHARTS
With six goals so far this season, junior forward DeJuan Jones is now just three from tying forward Ryan Sierakowski’s mark of nine goals of last season. The last Spartan to reach double-figures in goals scored was Domenic Barone, brother of Hunter and Giuseppe, who scored 10 in 2010.
Joe Baum: HALL OF FAMER
Former MSU soccer head coach and player Joe Baum was inducted into the MSU Hall of Fame on Thursday, Sept. 29.
Baum was a part of Michigan State soccer as a player, assistant coach and head coach for a combined 39 seasons. As a goalkeeper, he led MSU to back-to-back co-national championships. Later, he served as the head coach of the men’s program for 32 years and the women’s program for five years, compiling a combined 389 victories. Baum established himself as one of the titans of college soccer during his tenure with the Spartan men’s team. He finished his career with 320 victories, becoming just the second coach in Big Ten history to reach the 300-win plateau.
FANS IN THE STANDS
The Spartans are eighth in the nation in attendance, averaging 2,301 fans per home game. Three Big Ten teams are ranked in the top 10 in the nation with Maryland standing No. 1 (4,039), while Indiana is sixth (2,482).
For the second-time this season, Michigan State topped its DeMartin Stadium attendance record when 4,678 fans packed the stadium and a standing room only crowd watched No. 6 MSU battle to a 0-0 double overtime tie against No. 3 Maryland on Sept. 22. In the first night game of the season on Sept. 1, 3,515 fans filled DeMartin. The previous high was 3,175 last season when MSU defeated Michigan on Sept. 18, 2016.
Due in part to the amazing student section known as the Red Cedar Rowdies, Michigan State is an impressive 14-0-3 in its last 17 games at DeMartin Stadium. Last season, MSU set a school-record with most wins at home going 9-0-2. In 2017, the Spartans are already 5-0-1 at home. In its last home match, MSU defeated Penn State in Big Ten action on October 14.
BEST OF THE BEST
Michigan State is among the nation’s best in the latest NCAA statistics. MSU is second in the nation in shutout percentage (.643) and 11th in team goals against average (0.667). Redshirt-junior goalkeeper Jimmy Hague is second in the nation in shutouts with 10, seventh in goals against average (0.514) and 12th in save percentage (.837). The junior forward dynamic duo of Ryan Sierakowski and DeJuan Jones are tied for seventh and 25th in the nation in game-winning goals with four and three, respectively. Junior defender Connor Corrigan is 38th in assists with six.
In 15 games this season, the Spartans are 9-1 in games decided by one goal. Michigan State has won seven 1-0 games and defeated Rutgers, 2-1 on Sept. 8. Last season, the Spartans were an exceptional 10-3 in one-goal games, including four wins in 1-0 decisions.
BIG TIME, BIG TEN
This week, the Spartans are No. 9 in the United Soccer Coaches Poll. This week, there are three Big Ten teams ranked in the top 10 with Indiana standing No. 1, while Maryland remains No. 3. Future opponent Notre Dame is No. 12 this week. The mitten state is well represented as Western Michigan is No. 8, while Michigan stands No. 23 this week.
In the latest Top Drawer Soccer poll, Michigan State is currently No. 12. In this week’s College Soccer News poll, MSU is No. 8.
SENIOR CLASS AWARD
Senior defender Jimmy Fiscus was one of 60 NCAA® men’s and women’s soccer student-athletes who excel both on and off the field were selected as candidates for the 2017 Senior CLASS Award® in collegiate soccer. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
CHECK OUT THE STANDINGS
As Michigan State reaches the end of Big Ten action, the Spartans, Indiana and Maryland are tied for first place with 17 points. Michigan stand in fourth place with 16 points and a 5-1-1 record. Junior forwards DeJuan Jones and Ryan Sierakowski are tied for fourth in the league in goals scored with six goals. Sierakowski is tied for second in the B1G with four game-winning goals.
Redshirt-junior goalkeeper Jimmy Hague is second in shutouts with 10. Hague is also second in goals against average with a mark of 0.51.
SIERAKOWSKI NAMED TO HERMANN WATCH LIST
Michigan State men’s soccer junior forward Ryan Sierakowski was named to the Missouri Athletic Club (MAC) Hermann Trophy Watch List. The MAC Hermann Trophy is the most prestigious individual award in college soccer and is presented annually to the most outstanding male and female players of the year. Sierakowski, a native of McHenry, Illinois, is the first Michigan State men’s soccer player named to the Hermann Watch List since goalkeeper Avery Steinlage in 2010. In 2014, midfielder Jay Chapman was named a semifinalist for the Hermann Trophy, becoming the first Spartan in school history to achieve the feat.
OH CAPTAIN MY CAPTAIN
This season, the Spartans have three captains in senior Jimmy Fiscus, Brad Centala and Ryan Scott.
Sophomore Giuseppe Barone became the fourth member of the Barone family to don the Green and White last season. He joins current Spartan Hunter as well as former MSU players Mark (2008-11) Domenic (2008-12).
Michigan State concludes a two-game homestand against in-state rival Oakland on Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 7 p.m. MSU will then travel to Northwestern on Friday, Oct. 20 at 8:30 p.m. (ET).