Maryland-George Mason Men's Soccer Preview

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Where: George Mason Stadium, Fairfax.

When: 8 p.m.

Tickets: $5 for adults, $2 for youth and seniors.

Records: Terrapins 5-1-1, Patriots 5-2-0.

Outlook: With a 1-0 victory over previously unbeaten North Carolina on Friday, ACC front-runner Maryland jumped five spots to No. 3 behind Akron and UCLA in Soccer America's national rankings. The Terrapins and their rebuilt back line have conceded just two goals since a season-opening 2-0 loss to UCLA but have also benefited from opponents missing penalty kicks the past two weeks. F Casey Townsend, an all-American candidate who aggravated an ankle injury against the Tar Heels, seems unlikely to play against George Mason, and senior MF Doug Rodkey has a foot ailment. Maryland, the reigning national champion, leads the all-time series against the Patriots with an 8-5-1 record, including a 2-0 victory in the second round of the 2008 NCAA tournament. George Mason, the preseason favorite in the Colonial Athletic Association and nationally ranked at the start of the season, has won three straight, all by shutout, and opened league play Saturday with a 1-0 victory at Virginia Commonwealth. The Patriots have allowed just four goals, two in a loss to American at the D.C. College Cup early this month. F Jason Herrick has four goals for Maryland, while three of George Mason's top scorers are from the Washington area: MF Ryan Garcia (Wootton), D Eric Zuehsow (Broad Run) and F Draymond Washington (Magruder).

-- Steven Goff

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