NASHVILLE, Tenn.- The Belmont University men's soccer team (3-11-2, 1-5-1) returns to action after a quick turnaround when it travels to Blacksburg, Virginia for a showdown with ACC foe Virginia Tech, Tuesday evening. Match time is set for 6 p.m., as the Bruins look to ride the momentum of their first Horizon League road result and take part in some non-conference action.
"We are excited about this match. It's a great opportunity to see how we measure up against a from one of the top conferences in the country," said Head Coach Bryan Green monday afternoon.
Fans interested in viewing the action live can jump to HokieExtra for a free stream provided by Virginia Tech.
The Bruins take a quick break from Horizon League play as they continue to battle for a conference tournament birth. The top six teams qualify for the Horizon League Conference Tournament, BU sits in 10th place but is certainly within striking distance for postseason action.
The Bruins earned their first road points of the season as they turned in a gritty-110 minute effort in route to a 1-1 double-overtime draw in Valparaiso, Ind. this past Saturday night. In what a was dreary, rainy night in northwest Indiana, the Bruins battled the elements and played some of the best soccer they have played all year as they earned a draw against the league's No. 5 team heading into play. Sophomore striker Rashad Hyacenth (D'Abadie, Trinidad and Tobago) scored his league-high sixth goal of the season as he scored the game-tying goal in the 41st minute. Hyacenth found himself in the right place at the right time as he has many a time this season. Hyacenth was assisted by freshman Thailer Usonis (Virginia Beach, Va.) who had just subbed into the match. Usonis's assist was his first as a collegiate. The Bruins tied a season-high with nine shots on goal and outshot Valparaiso 15-13 on the match. The Bruins' eight first half shots are the most of any match they have played this season. Six of those eight attempts were on frame also a season high. Belmont fought off Valparaiso, as well as the elements, as a persistent wind and rain mix was present for most of the match.
The Hokies (5-7-3, 0-4-3 ACC) enter Tuesday's action in a five match winless streak as their last win came against West Virginia on Oct. 6. In this span Virginia Tech lost three and tied twice, while taking the pitch against two top 25 squads in Notre Dame and Virginia. In the Hokies last matchup against Virginia, they dropped a 1-0 decision despite outshooting UVA. Va. Tech is paced offensively by Merlin Baus who is the team leader in goals (5), assists (5) and points (15). The Hokies keeper, Ben Lundgaard, is ACC's leader in saves with 58 as of Monday, Oct. 26. Ricardo John and Som Essome each have registered three goals on the year, as Essome leads the Hokies in shots with 45.
Hyacenth, with his six shots against Valparaiso, is now the Belmont leader in single season shot attempts with 56. Hyacenth eclipsed Lars Kupperud's mark of 54 set in 1999. Hyacenth ranks second in the conference in shots trailing the top count by just one, and is tied for 16th in the nation in shots per match with 3.73.
Tuesday evening marks the first meeting between the Belmont and Virginia Tech programs.
After their clash with the Hokies, the Bruins return to action Saturday, Oct. 31 when they host UIC for Senior Day at Rose Park. Match time for the Bruins final home match is set for 2 p.m. in Nashville.