Montclair, NJ (11/7/11) – The Montclair State men's soccer team found itself in a familiar place on Monday - back in the NCAA Division III Men's Soccer Tournament.
The Red Hawks received one of the 19 at-large selections into the field of 61 teams and will host First and Second Round action on Saturday, November 12 and Sunday, November 13 at MSU Soccer Park at Pittser Field. Game times are 11:00 am and 1:30 pm on Saturday with a 1:00 pm start slated for Sunday.
Montclair State (15-3-3), making its sixth straight appearance, will take on Framingham State (8-8-3) in one first-round contest while Dickinson (10-4-5) faces Vassar College (11-5-3) in the other game. The winners meet on Sunday with the winner advancing to the Sectional Tournament on November 19-20. All three teams qualified for the NCAA Tournament via the automatic bid as Framingham won the Massachussetts State College Athletic Conference (MSCAC) while Vassar and Dickinson captured the Liberty League and Centennial Conference, respectively.
This will be MSU's 12th trip to the Division III Tournament (1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1998, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011) and its 15th overall. Montclair went to three NCAA College Division Tournaments in 1968, 1969 and 1972. The Red Hawks are 8-13-1 in those previous 14 appearances, 6-10-1 in the Division III tournament. Montclair has advanced to the Sectional Tournament in three of the past five seasons.
In 2006, the Red Hawks knocked off Wesleyan, 1-0 in the second round before being ousted in penalty kicks by Dominican. The next two years, it was Messiah ending Montclair's season. In 2007, the Falcons edged MSU 1-0 in Gratham in the Sectional Final and the next year handed the Red Hawks their only loss of the season, 1-0 in double overtime in the Sectional Semifinal at Christopher Newport University. In 2009, MSU fell in the second round to Stevens and last year fell in the second round to Messiah, 2-1 after beating New York Maritime, 3-0 in the first round.
This will be the first meeting between Montclair State and Framingham State and the same can be said for a potential matchup with Dickinson. The Red Hawks have faced Vassar seven times and hold a 4-3 lead in the series although the two have not met since the 1996 when MSU posted a 1-0 victory at Sprague Field.
Framingham State (8-8-3), which is making its third NCAA appearance and first since 2008, is led this season by sophomore midfielder Ronaldo Vieira (Framingham, Mass.), who is second in the MASCAC in scoring with 11 goals and two assists on the year for 24 points. Freshman midfielder Bryan DaSilva (Milford, Mass.), who was selected the MASCAC Tournament's Most Valuable Player and is the reigning MASCAC Player of the Week, is second on the team in scoring with four goals and five assists for 13 points. Right behind DaSilva are sophomore Romulo Carvalho (Milford, Mass.) with 12 points (four goals-four assists) and freshman Cory Cardeiro (Fall River, Mass.) with 11 points (four goals-three assists).
Senior back Peter Maranto (Haverhill, Mass.), junior Luis Gomes (Milford, Mass.) and freshman Matt Carvalho (Chicopee, Mass.) are anchoring the Rams defense that is allowing only 1.79 goals per game on the year. Junior Sam Yoder (Southbridge, Mass.) has seen the majority of action in net this year for the Rams with a 7-6-3 record, 1.62 goals against average and a .823 save percentage.
Dickinson (10-4-5) is also making its third appearance in the NCAAs having gone in 2007 and 2007. The Red Devils advanced to the Centennial Conference final with 2-0 win over Muhlenberg College in the semifinals. They played to a thrilling 1-1 draw with Haverford in the final, coming from behind to force overtime and an eventual shootout. Dickinson converted its final three kicks while junior goaltender Cody Hickok (Redding, Conn./Joel Barlow) made three saves in the shootout as the Devils claimed their first league title and the automatic bid, 3-2.
Vassar (11-5-3) make their second NCAA appearance, also qualifying in 1999. They defeated Cabrini College at home 2-1 in overtime on November 10, 1999 but fell to Richard Stockton 5-0 on road in the second round on November 13, 1999.