JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville University men’s soccer team returns to Atlantic Sun action this weekend in a 7 p.m. matchup against Northern Kentucky on Saturday, Oct. 26. Coming off of a disappointing non-conference match at Georgia Southern, the Dolphins look to turn things around and continue to break way in the A-Sun with their first ever trip to Highland Heights.
The Dolphins (4-8-1, 2-2-0) currently sit in the fifth spot in conference standings and have four remaining matches before the seasons end. “This [Returning to A-Sun action] is the main focus of our team and I feel confident our guys will be ready to play a full 90 against a very good-very disciplined NKU team,” says Head Coach Ryan Pratt.
Despite scoring just two goals in two matches last weekend, the Dolphins tie with Eastern Kentucky for most goals per game with an average of 1.5. While injuries have forced key JU players to sit out, the team has asked others to step up and they have done just that. In example, getting his second start in the 4-1 loss to Georgia Southern, freshman midfielder Valentine Murombo played quality minutes for the Dolphins and netted his first career-goal.
Joining the conference in 2012, the Norse has seen many successes in their two years of Atlantic Sun play. Nine overtime matches played so far this fall, NKU (6-3-6, 2-1-1) is two extra periods shy of tying the NCAA record for most in a season and has already set a conference record for most draws. Scoring 17 goals as a team, junior forward Caleb Eastham leads Norse with four goals.
Jacksonville at Northern Kentucky
Overall: NKU leads the series, 1-0.
Notable: In the sole matchup between JU and NKU, the Norse defeated the Dolphins, 2-1, last season in Jacksonville.
Coach Quotes: “They are a tough gritty team that plays with a lot of confidence at home. We will need to make sure we are ready for the challenge that lies ahead”.
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