Just one loss in their first 12 has been enough to vault the Syracuse Orange men's soccer team into national recognition. Looks like this week the pollsters all inched the Orange up a touch.
NSCAA Coaches Poll: #2 (Previous 4)
Top Drawer Soccer: #3 (Previous 3)
RPI: #4 (Previous 4)
College Soccer News: #4 (Previous 10)
How they've gone from a team mired in mediocrity and even downright poor, to a legit contender for the number one spot in the country is a great story. Coach Ian McIntyre has had the program turn a corner, through a mix of solid recruiting internationally as well as getting the local talent to stay home.
Chris Carlson has a nice recap over on Syracuse.com outlining the growth of the program and where it's come from to stand where it is, frankly flirting with some of the giants of the college game.
Last week led the Orange on another 2-0 campaign stop, picking up wins against Albany and Wake Forest. Tyler Hilliard picked up Team of the Week honors for his brace (2 goals for any non soccer fans in the audience) against Wake, leading the team to another 3-1 victory. Both were headers off of Jordan Murrell crosses. That kid has a wonder-foot when it comes to set pieces and crosses, currently leading the team in assists again... from the backline.
10/14/14 - UConn Match:
The Orange travel to Storrs tonight to take on the Huskies. They're a familiar foe from the Big East days and should be decent competition for the Orange. Last year, the Orange took the home leg on an early Alex Halis goal past their standout keeper Andre Blake and held on for the 1-0 victory.
Blake isn't there anymore. He's playing in Philadelphia for the Union. UConn isn't quite as good as they were, but they're still formidable and on a 3 game unbeaten streak. At 7pm tonight we'll see if we can come up with the victory to keep the season streaking on.
Stats to Date:
Courtesy of Syracuse Athletics