Patriot League Men's Soccer Tournament Championship Game
Teams: Holy Cross (9-8-2, 6-3-0 PL) vs. Navy (14-3-2, 9-0-0 PL)
Date: Nov. 17, 2013
Place: Glenn Warner Soccer Facility, Annapolis, Md.
Time: 1:00 p.m.
HC TO PLAY NAVY IN PL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME: The Holy Cross men's soccer team (9-8-2 overall, 6-3-0 PL) is the No. 3 seed in the Patriot League Tournament and will take on No. 1 seed Navy (14-3-2 overall, 9-0-0 PL) in the championship game on Sunday, Nov. 17 at 1:00 p.m. at the Glenn Warner Soccer Facility in Annapolis, Md. Go here to watch the game: http://new.livestream.com/PatriotLeagueNetwork/menssoccer. The winner will earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Crusaders earned a spot in the championship game by winning a shootout versus No. 2 seed Army, 4-3. Senior captain Dane Kenny (Williston Park, N.Y.) tallied the winning penalty kick in the sixth round. Senior Max Pettinelli (Scituate, Mass.), senior Tommy Uttaro (Staten Island, N.Y.) and senior captain Monty Sanders (Temecula, Calif.) all found the back. Navy defeated No. 4 seed Bucknell, 1-0 in the semifinals. The Crusaders fell to the Midshipmen, 1-0 in overtime on Oct. 26 at home at the Linda Johnson Smith Soccer Stadium earlier this season. Alex Evans netted the overtime game-winner for the Mids. This will be the third ever Patriot League Tournament meeting between these two programs as Navy won in the 1995 semifinals by a 2-0 score in overtime, while the Crusaders defeated the Mids by a 1-0 score in the 2001 semifinals. The Crusaders are 14-8-2 all-time against Navy and 2-3-0 versus the Midshipmen in the last five meetings. The Crusaders are making their fourth appearance in the Patriot League championship game and their first since 2008 when they lost to Colgate, 2-1. Holy Cross won the championship during the 2002 season on penalty kicks versus Lehigh, as it also made it to the final game in 2001 falling to American in penalty kicks.
HC LOOKING FOR SECOND PATRIOT LEAGUE TITLE: This is Holy Cross' 12th ever appearance in the Patriot League Tournament. The Crusaders' previous appearances were in 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2007 and 2008. The Crusaders are 4-9-3 in the history of the Patriot League Tournament and are 2-8-2 in the semifinals making the championship game four times (2001, 2002, 2008 and 2013). The Crusaders' last appearance in the Patriot League Tournament ended with a 2-1 loss to Colgate in the 2008 finals. Holy Cross' lone Patriot League title came in 2002 when it defeated Lehigh on the eleventh penalty kick in a game that was moved to Nickerson Field, on the campus of Boston University, due to icy conditions in Worcester. This is the fifth time Holy Cross has entered the tournament as the No. 3 seed.
CRUSADERS WITH THEIR MOST WINS SINCE 2008: The Crusaders' nine overall wins are their most since going 9-5-5 in 2008, while their six Patriot League victories tie for their most all-time with the 2001 team which went 6-0-1 in league play. Holy Cross' 24 goals this season are its most since netting 26 in 2007 and its 23 goals allowed are its lowest since allowing 18 in 2009.
HEAD COACH MARCO KOOLMAN: Marco Koolman is in his second season as the head men's soccer coach at the College of the Holy Cross in 2013. The 11th head coach in the history of the Crusader men's soccer program, Koolman has a 14-18-4 record in his first two seasons. This year the Crusaders' nine wins are their most since the 2008 season. In Koolman's first season, the Crusaders went 5-10-2 overall and tied for fourth place in the Patriot League with a 2-3-2 record just missing qualification for the 2012 Patriot League Tournament. Koolman owns a career record of 215-93-32 as a collegiate head coach. Koolman spent nine seasons as the head coach at Franklin Pierce University from 2000-2008, with the Ravens winning the NCAA Division II national championship in 2007. Franklin Pierce went 127-46-22 overall during Koolman's tenure. He was named National Coach of the Year by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America in 2007. Prior to his time at Franklin Pierce, Koolman was the head coach at Gannon University from 1991-1996. He led the Golden Knights to an overall record of 74-29-6 during his six-year tenure, with the team advancing to the NCAA Division II national semifinals in 1993. Koolman also earned NSCAA National Coach of the Year honors in 1993.
SANDERS NAMED TO FIRST TEAM ALL-LEAGUE: For the second year in a row senior captain Monty Sanders earned first team All-Patriot League honors. He was also named to the Patriot League All-Academic team for the first time in his career. On Oct. 16, Sanders was ECAC Offensive Player of the Week and Oct. 14 he was named Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week. Sanders is a two-time captain who as a senior has tallied four goals, eight assists and 16 points, which are all career-highs. Sanders leads the team in assists and points, as his eight assists are second all-time in a season in school history. He leads the team with a career-best three game-winning goals. He posted two assists as the Crusaders defeated Colgate, 3-0, in the Patriot League quarterfinals and also assisted on the Crusaders' goal versus Army in the semifinals. During his career, Sanders has only missed one game, playing and starting in 70 games posting a total of 11 career goals, 10 assists and 32 points. His 10 assists are tied for 10th all-time in program history. He won the team's 2013 Luke Dunivant Award, which goes to a player who has inspired others by displaying outstanding courage, commitment to the team and sportsmanship during his career. Sanders was named to the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll in 2011 and 2012 and is a three-year member of the Holy Cross Leadership Academy.
WRIGHT STRONG IN NET: Sophomore goalie Kevin Wright (McKinney, Texas) has a 9-6-2 record on the season. He tallied a career-best nine saves as the Crusaders earned a 3-0 win versus Colgate in the Patriot League quarterfinals. He then posted four saves versus Army in the semifinals. On Oct. 16, Wright was name ECAC Defensive Player of the Week and Oct. 14, he was named Patriot League Goalie of the Week.
DEVIVO LEADS TEAM IN GOALS: Freshman Joey DeVivo (Ridgefield, Conn.) leads the team with six goals this season. He scored the Crusaders' goal versus Army in the semifinals on Nov. 15. His six goals and 13 points are the most by a Crusader freshman since Kyle Miller tallied seven goals and 16 points as a freshman in 2007. On Sept. 23, DeVivo was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week.
CINTAS NAMED SECOND TEAM ALL-LEAGUE: Senior Josh Cintas (San Diego, Calif.) earned second-team All-Patriot League honors in 2013. He was also named Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week on Oct. 21. This season he is tied for second on the team with four goals and also has two assists for 10 points. He netted two goals as the Crusaders defeated Colgate in the Patriot League quarterfinals, 3-0. Cintas has played in 51 career games with 45 starts. Over his collegiate career, he has totaled 11 goals and eight assists for a combined 30 career points. Last year in 2012, Cintas earned both first team All-Patriot League and third team All-Mid Atlantic honors. He is a member of the Holy Cross Leadership Academy.
UTTARO RECEIVES ALL-LEAGUE ACCOLADES: Senior Tommy Uttaro earned third-team All-Patriot League honors. Uttaro has appeared in 70 career games that include 62 starts, which is tied for the most games played by any current member of the team. In his career, Uttaro has tallied eight goals and eight assists totaling 24 points. Four of his eight goals have been game winners. This season he has three goals and two assists for eight points. Uttaro also has one appearance on the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll.
MELODY SELECTED TO ALL-LEAGUE TEAM: Sophomore Luke Melody (Mansfield, Conn.) also received third-team All-Patriot League honors. Melody has made 19 starts in his 19 games played this season. He has one goal and one assist for three points including his first career game winner in the 2-1 victory over Lehigh on Nov. 9. In his 35 career games played, Melody has started in all 35. He has scored three goals and has one assist for seven career points, including two goals for four points as a freshman in 2012.