Men's Soccer Faces William and Mary in CAA Championship Semifinal
Nov. 13, 2008
WILMINGTON, N.C. - Third-seeded George Mason will take on second-seeded William and Mary in the semifinal round of the Colonial Athletic Association Men's Soccer Championship, held at the home of the top seed, UNC Wilmington. The match will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and will be preceded by a match between No. 5 Northeastern and UNCW at 5 p.m.
Both the Patriots and the Tribe finished with the same conference record (6-4-1) during the 2008 regular season. The two teams met at George Mason Stadium back on Oct. 4, with William and Mary coming away with a 1-0 victory on a game-winning goal by Third-Team All-CAA forward Price Thomas 29 seconds into the first overtime period.
Offense will take center stage when the two teams meet as George Mason and William and Mary rank 1-2 in the conference in points, goals, goals per game, assists and assists per game. The Patriots' explosive attack leads the CAA in points (93), goals (31), assists (31) and assists per game (1.63). Leading the way for Mason is senior forward Kwame Adjeman-Pamboe, a First-Team All-CAA selection who has scored five goals and added four assists in the final five matches, all Patriot wins. He leads the team in goals (6), assists (6) and points (18) this season and ranks in the top three in the CAA in points (18), points per game (0.95), assists (6) and assists per game (0.32).
Countering for the Tribe attack is the trio of sophomore midfielder Nathaniel Baako, a First-Team All-CAA selection, junior forward Andrew Hoxie, a Second-Team All-CAA selection, and Thomas. All three rank in the top-10 in the conference in points. Baako enters the match with five goals, five assists and 15 points, Hoxie has six goals, four assists and 16 points, and Thomas has four goals, six assists and 14 points in 2008.
With all the offensive firepower on the field, both defenses will be tested. Both have shown they are capable of shutting down an opponent as the Patriots are tied for second in the conference in shutouts with eight, while the Tribe are tied for fourth with six. George Mason has recorded four shutouts in the past five matches, with the only goal allowed during that stretch coming in the 89th minute of a 3-1 win against Old Dominion on Nov. 7.
Junior goalkeeper Sean Kelley was named to the All-CAA Team for the second time in his George Mason career, making the third team this year. In 17 starts in goal, the Lexington, Ky. native has recorded a goals against average of 0.85 with 65 saves and eight shutouts. Kelley ranks second in the conference in goals against average (0.85) and shutouts (8), and third in save percentage (.812). Sophomore Andrew McAdams has started all 18 matches in goal for the Tribe this season with a 1.21 goals against average, 71 saves and six shutouts.
A pair of streaks will be on the line on Friday evening. George Mason comes into the match with a five-match winning streak, while William and Mary enters Friday's action with a four-match unbeaten streak.
At stake is a berth in the CAA Championship match, slated for 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 16 at UNCW Soccer Stadium. The winner of the CAA Championship will earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Division I Men's Soccer Championship.