Nov. 7, 2017
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NORFOLK, Va. - The Marshall men's soccer team begins its journey in the Conference USA Tournament on Wednesday, Nov. 8 at 4:30 p.m., against the Kentucky Wildcats. The Thundering Herd is the No. 6 seed and Kentucky is the No. 3 seed.
THE PREVIOUS MATCH
Marshall and Kentucky met earlier this season on Oct. 14 at Hoops Family Field in Huntington, W.Va. The Herd came out with a 1-0 victory over the then 21st ranked Wildcats. Freshman Lewis Knight received a long cross from freshman Jamil Roberts in the box, and headed the ball into the net in the 72nd minute. Senior goalkeeper Nate Himes recorded five saves in the shutout win. Marshall is 15-18-3 all-time against Kentucky.
Marshall and Kentucky have met three times in conference tournament play over the years. The first time was in the second round of the Mid-American Conference Tournament in 2000. The Wildcats won 1-0. The second meeting was a 3-1 Marshall win in the 2007 Conference USA tourney. The last time these two squads met in the postseason was in 2008, a 4-2 Kentucky victory.
HAVE YOU HERD?
The Herd ended the season 7-9-1 overall and 3-5-0 in Conference USA play. Marshall earned its way into the C-USA tournament with a 2-1, double overtime win over the UAB Blazers (Oct. 28). The win put Marshall back in the conference tourney after just missing in 2016.
Two years ago, the Herd almost pulled off the major upset. Marshall entered the tournament as the No. 7 seed, defeated the No. 2 seed Charlotte on penalty-kicks after two overtimes and then beat No. 3 South Carolina to advance to the championship match. The Herd lost in the title game 1-0 to FIU. It was the second time that Marshall made it to the C-USA championship match. The first was in 2009, a 3-0 loss to Tulsa.
Knight and sophomore Carlos Diaz-Salcedo were honored Tuesday by Conference USA. Knight was named to the All-Freshman team and All-Conference second team. Diaz-Salcedo was also named to the second team.
SCOUTING THE WILDCATS
Kentucky ended the regular season 8-5-4 and 4-2-2 in conference action. The Wildcats ended the season with a 2-2 draw against FIU (Oct. 29) and a 1-1 draw at Charlotte (Nov. 4). UK has just one win in its last six matches going 1-3-2.
The Wildcats had several players named all-conference. Defender Alex Bumpus and goalkeeper Enrique Facusse were named to the first team. Forward J.J. Williams, midfielder Kevin Barajas and defender Leon Jones were named to the third team. Facusse, Jones and Aime Mabika were named to the All-Freshman team. Facusse also shared the Golden Glove Award with Mertcan Akar of Old Dominion. The Golden Glove Award goes to the goalkeeper with the most shutouts in conference play. The freshman from Tegucigalpa, Honduras had four.
The winner of the match will take on the winner of the (2) Old Dominion vs. (7) South Carolina contest, and will be played on Friday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m.
HOW TO FOLLOW THE MATCH
All of the matches will be streamed through CUSA TV. The Championship match on Sunday will be broadcast on ESPN 3. For all the latest information about Marshall men's soccer, follow @HerdMSoccer on Twitter and Instagram, as well as Marshall University Soccer on Facebook.