Oct. 10, 2007
Baltimore, Md. - The Loyola men's soccer team enters this weekend's matches with Fairfield and Iona as the top-ranked team in the North Atlantic Region and receiving votes in the national polls. The Greyhounds, picked second in the preseason MAAC Coaches Poll, host favorite Fairfield on Friday and conference foe Iona on Sunday at Diane Geppi-Aikens Field.
Loyola is 9-2 overall this season, and after three consecutive shutouts from its stingy defense, the Greyhounds are 2-0 in the MAAC and 4-0 at home. Leading scorer Phil Bannister was named the MAAC Offensive Player of the Week after his five-point effort at Marist last Sunday, while sophomore keeper Milos Kocic was named the MAAC Defensive Player of the Week after his 10 saves and zero goals allowed against Siena and Marist.
The Greyhounds have outscored opponents 20-7 this season and 8-2 in home matches. They are currently atop the MAAC standings with six points, while Fairfield is alone in second with four points after a win over Manhattan and tie against Saint Peter's last weekend.
The Stags enter Friday's match with a 6-2-2 overall record and are ranked fourth in the NCAA North Atlantic Region. Last year, Loyola and Fairfield split matches with the Greyhounds winning a regular season tilt and dropping a MAAC Tournament decision - both matches at Fairfield.
On Sunday, Loyola will host an Iona side currently third in the MAAC standings. Iona won its only conference match of the year, a 3-1 win over Manhattan, but plays Saint Peter's and Rider before Sunday's match with Loyola. The Gaels are 4-6-0 overall and 1-4 on the road this season.
Friday's game is slated for a 4 p.m. start, while Sunday's match is at 1 p.m. The Greyhounds, who have seven regular season games left on their schedule, play five of the final seven at home.