Previewing 2018 Men’s Soccer: Clemson

bc men's soccer

Boston College men’s soccer (1-0-2) welcomes familiar competition to Newton on Friday night in the form of ACC foe Clemson (3-1-0). The Eagles, yet to lose a match this season, will have their work cut out for them, as the Tigers arrive off the back of a three-game win streak. Over that period, Clemson—ranked inside the nation’s Top 10 last year—maintained a clean sheet as its characteristically resolute defense held up against stiff tests from Omaha and South Carolina and, most notably, in its first home game against Villanova.

It was the Tigers’ first-ever meeting with the Wildcats, but the men from South Carolina sent their Pennsylvanian counterparts packing while improving their own record to 3-1-0 for the year, with their only loss coming against Creighton. As such, Friday’s “Welcome Back Students Night” should prove to be a tantalizing affair.

Who is BC playing?

Clemson University

When is BC playing?

Friday, Sep. 7, 7 p.m.

Where is BC playing?

Newton Soccer Field, Newton, Mass.  

How to Watch:

The match is available to watch on ACC Network Extra.  

By the Numbers:

BC:

1) BC drew its only home game of the season against Boston University, 3-3.  

2) The Eagles are averaging two goals per contest this season, 0.71 more than they recorded in 2017.

3) Sophomore goalkeeper Antonio Chavez Borrelli made a career-high eight saves last time out against Providence.

Clemson:

1) The Tigers have let up only two of the 44 shots that their opponents have logged this season.

2) Clemson has been yellow carded eight times this season. To put that in perspective, BC has been booked on five separate occasions.

3) The Tigers have been awarded 19 corners in 2018, 12 more than the Eagles.

Last Meeting:

Last September, BC struggled to convert any of its good chances, as it fell, 1-0, at the hands of then-No. 10 Clemson at Historic Riggs Field.

Following a scoreless first half—one in which Eagles freshman goalkeeper Chavez Borrelli impressed in net—the Tigers eventually broke the deadlock. After some neat one-touch passing, Clemson’s Tanner Dieterich lost his marker and managed to get off a first-time shot that clattered in off the inside of the post. BC substitute Trevor Davock came on to inspire some spirited late-game attacks—however, the Eagles simply could not put the ball in the back of the net and eventually paid the price come full time.

BC wins if…

It can get over its Clemson hump. Last year’s loss saw the Tigers improve their head-to-head record against BC to 7-0-4, furthering an unbeaten streak that stretches back a decade. On paper, the two teams seem evenly matched, but the result hinges on whether BC can overcome any psychological barrier they might harbor when facing the Tigers. If the Eagles buckle down, they should have a chance to hang with their ACC counterpart.

BC loses if…

It fails to break down Clemson’s back four. Despite conceding two in their first game of the season, the Tigers were remarkably solid in their next three contests, spanning over the course of the last fortnight. Clemson defender Patrick Bunk-Andersen can be held at least partly responsible for the team’s defensive run of late, having earned ACC Defensive Player of the Week honors on Wednesday for his performance against in-state rival South Carolina. If BC fails to get by the 6-foot-2 Danish centre back, it will have a hard time posing any sort of threat to Clemson goalkeeper Jonny Sutherland.

Featured Image by Julia Hopkins / Heights Senior Staff