OMAHA, Neb. – The Creighton men’s soccer team earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the 22nd time in 23 seasons when pairings were announced on NCAA.com on Monday afternoon.
No. 12 seed Creighton (14-3-2) will face the winner of a first-round contest between Denver (11-7-1) and Oregon State (11-7-1). The Bluejays will host a second-round match in the 48-team tournament on Sunday, Nov. 23 at 12:30 p.m. CT inside Morrison Stadium. Creighton is 3-0-1 all-time against Denver and 1-0-1 against Oregon State.
Creighton, 10-2-0 at home this season and is 11-2-0 all-time in NCAA Tournament matches played at Morrison Stadium. The Jays were one of four BIG EAST squads to make the 2014 NCAA field joining No. 8 seed Georgetown, No. 11 seed Providence and Xavier. CU owns a 2-3-2 record against fellow NCAA Tourney teams this season.
The Jays came into Selection Monday at No. 9 nationally in the latest RPI released by the NCAA on Nov. 9. The Bluejays’ at-large selection is their second consecutive since joining the BIG EAST Conference.
Creighton is now 28-18-6 overall in the NCAA Tournament all-time. The Bluejays have advanced to at least the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals in six of their last 11 appearances. The Jays have made five total NCAA College Cup appearances (1996, 2000, 2002, 2011 and 2012).
Elmar Bolowich, the head coach of the Bluejays, recently guided teams to five consecutive NCAA College Cup appearances (Creighton – 2012, 2011 and North Carolina - 2010, 2009, 2008) and won a national title with the Tar Heels in 2001. This will be Bolowich's 19th NCAA Tournament appearance as a head coach.
Creighton won its first BIG EAST men’s soccer regular season title this year with a 7-1-1 conference record and 14-2-2 mark overall. The Jays blanked 18 of 19 opponents in the first half this season and only once surrendered more than one goal in a match this year. CU posted 10 shutouts this season and allowed only 10 goals through 19 matches in 2014.
CU ranks at No. 3 nationally with a team goals against average of 0.51. The Jays rank No. 11 in shutout percentage at 0.53 and are No. 13 in save percentage at 0.836.
CU sophomore forward Fabian Herbers earned a unanimous selection from the BIG EAST coaches as the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year. Junior Timo Pitter claimed BIG EAST Midfielder of the Year honors while Creighton’s coaching staff shared BIG EAST Coaching Staff of the Year honors with Xavier.
Herbers, Pitter and senior Jose Ribas were unanimous All-BIG EAST First team selections this season. Additionally, freshman Lucas Stauffer was also a unanimous selection on the BIG EAST All-Rookie Team.
Pitter and Herbers were also named to the BIG EAST All-Tournament Team following the Bluejays’ 1-0 downfall to Providence in a conference semifinal on Friday.
Men’s soccer season ticket holders can purchase their regular season seat locations for Sunday’s second-round match by stopping by the Wayne and Eileen Ryan Athletic Center Ticket Office today from 2 p.m.- 4:30 p.m.
Season ticket holders can also purchase their regular season seat locations for Sunday afternoon’s second-round match by stopping by the Wayne & Eileen Ryan Athletic Center Ticket Office tomorrow through Thursday from 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. and on Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Seats not purchased by season ticket holders by 12 p.m. on Friday will be made available to the general public starting at 1 p.m. on Friday. If season ticket holders are not able to purchase their season ticket locations during the allotted dates and times listed above, they are welcome to send someone down on their behalf to the Wayne and Eileen Ryan Athletic Center Ticket Office to fill out a short order form and purchase the tickets.
Ticket prices for the second-round NCAA match are $20 (upper level adult reserved), $12 (upper level youth reserved), $10 (lower level adult reserved), $9 (lower level adult general admission), $7 (lower level youth reserved, ages 3-18) and $6 (lower level youth general admission, ages 3-18).
Starting tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. fans that are not season ticket holders can purchase available tickets to the second-round match at all Ticketmaster locations (Baker’s, Younkers), Ticketmaster online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster and charging by phone at 800-745-3000.
Men’s soccer supporters who received a packet of 2014 parking passes to Morrison Stadium’s Lot S or Lot C should use the one marked “Match 16 - NCAA Round 2” for entry to that area on Sunday.
Should Creighton win its second-round match Sunday afternoon and earn the chance to host a third-round match, that match would be played on Sunday, Nov 30 at 1 p.m. inside Morrison Stadium.