Huskies Face Local Rival Northwestern on Wednesday

GO HUSKIES Sophomore Isaac Kannah
Sophomore Isaac Kannah

Oct. 23, 2012

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Northern Illinois (3-8-3) at Northwestern (10-3-2)
Date: Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Time: 6 p.m. CT
Location: Lakeside Field, Evanston, Ill.
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Twitter Updates: @NIUscores

About Northwestern
The Wildcats enter Wednesday's contest with a 10-3-2 overall record, 3-1 in Big Ten play. Northwestern suffered its first conference loss of the season on Sunday against Penn State, 1-0. Chris Ritter leads the Wildcats offensively with 15 points on five goals and five assists. Tyer Miller, a member of the U.S. Under-20 National Team player pool, has played all 15 matches in goal for Northwestern; he has a goals against average of 0.82 and six shutouts.

Last season, Northwestern earned a 2-0 victory over NIU. Lepe Seetane and Nikko Boxall tallied goals for the Wildcats.

Back to the Lakefront
Northern Illinois will be playing its third game of the season at Northwestern's Lakeside Field, having played UW Milwaukee and Iona earlier this season in Evanston. The Wildcats also played a pair of games in DeKalb during NIU's home tournament this season, meaning the two teams have seen each other four times before playing each other on Wednesday night.

Seven to Play 14
Just six Huskies: Karim Darbaki, Jordan Godsey, Paul Hogan, Charlie Oliver, Gael Rivera, Pat Sloan and James Stevenson, have played in all 14 matches this season for the Huskies. Three players: Jordan Godsey, Charlie Oliver and Pat Sloan, have started all 14 matches this season.

Godsey Extends Shutout Record
With his shutout against Rhode Island on Sept. 7, Jordan Godsey set a new NIU school record with his 27th career shutout, breaking a mark held by Markus Roy (1988-91). With his shutout this past Saturday against Bowling Green (Oct. 20), Godsey currently has 31 career shutouts. Last season, Godsey set the NIU single-season shutout record with 12 clean sheets and also posted a 0.70 goals against average, the second-best single-season mark in program history.

Godsey enters Wednesday's match with a 0.81 career goals against average, the best mark in school history.  

Pritchard Gets His First
Freshman Matt Pritchard scored the first goal of his collegiate career last week against Valparaiso (Oct. 17). Pritchard's goal came in his ninth appearance for the Huskies and he is the second member of the freshmen class to get his name on the scoresheet, joining Gabe Christianson who scored against Iona (Sept. 16). In addition to the goal, Pritchard has two assists this season and currently ranks third on the team in points.

Rivera Leads With Four
Gael Rivera scored his team-best fourth goal of the season to lead the Huskies to a 1-0 victory over Hartwick (Oct. 6). Rivera found the net in the 68th minute to help NIU to its second conference win of the season while also tying him with James Stevenson for the team lead in points. Rivera has eight points on four goals while Stevenson has eight points via three goals and two assists.

Stevenson Leads the Line
James Stevenson scored his third goal of the season when he tallied in the 67th minute of a 2-0 victory over Florida Atlantic (Sept. 30). Stevenson's marker against the Owls was the 12th of his NIU career. Stevenson also recorded an assist on Isaac Kannah's opening goal against FAU. The Falkirk, Scotland native is currently tied for the team lead with eight points (three goals, two assists).

Isaac Off the Mark
Isaac Kannah scored his first goal of the season in the conference opener against Florida Atlantic (Sept. 30). Kannah got the opening goal, which turned out to be the game-winner, in the 24th minute against the Owls. The goal was Kannah's first of the season, and the third of his NIU career.

Scoring Duo Earn All-Tournament Honors at New Mexico
Gael Rivera and James Stevenson, NIU's goalscorers, earned All-Tournament recognition at the Nike Lobo Invitational. For Rivera, the honor was his second of the season; he was also named to the NIU adidas Invitational All-Tournament Team.

Huskie Duo Honored at Northwestern
Charlie Oliver and Pat Sloan were named to the All-Tournament Team at the Northwestern Lakeside Classic. It was the second-straight week in which Oliver earned a tournament recognition, the freshman was also recognized on the All-Tournament Team at the NIU adidas Invitational. The honor was Sloan's second all-tournament selection of his career; he also earned All-Tournament honors last season at the Michigan Invitational.        

Three Named to NIU adidas Invitational All-Tournament Team
With a pair of ties against Rhode Island and Drake, the Huskies took second-place in their home tournament. Gael Rivera, Jayson LeSeth and Charlie Oliver were named to the All-Tournament team. This was the third all-tournament honor for Rivera in his NIU career, he was also named to the all-tournament team at the 2011 MAC Tournament and the 2011 Northwestern Lakeside Classic, and it is the first all-tournament team honor for both LeSeth and Oliver.

Huskies Tabbed Third in MAC
Northern Illinois was picked to finish third in the preseason coaches poll released Aug. 13. Akron was picked to win the conference while league newcomer West Virginia was tabbed to finish second behind the Zips.

50 Seasons of Huskie Soccer
This season, Northern Illinois is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its inaugural season. NIU played its first varsity soccer match on October 5, 1962, a 6-0 loss at Grinnell College.

A Challenging Slate
The 2012 schedule for NIU features four games against foes currently ranked in the NSCAA Top 25. The Huskies have played No. 2 Akron, No. 5 Marquette, No. 10 New Mexico and No. 21 Creighton. Wednesday's opponent, Northwestern, is just three spots out of this week's top 25.

The Luzzi File
Eric Luzzi is in his fourth season as the head coach at Northern Illinois. Luzzi has compiled a 37-28-6 record at the helm of the Huskies. Luzzi spent three seasons as an assistant at NIU before taking over the program in 2009. On May 24, NIU announced that Luzzi had signed a contract extension through the 2015 season.

Welcome West Virginia
On March 27, the Mid-American Conference announced the addition of West Virginia to the league as a soccer affiliate member. The Mountaineers join Florida Atlantic and Hartwick as soccer-only members of the conference.

Up Next
Northern Illinois will host MAC newcomer West Virginia on Saturday, Oct. 27, in the final home game of the season. Game time between the Huskies and Mountaineers is scheduled for 1 p.m.

The Last Meeting
Northern Illinois0
October 12, 2011
Evanston, Ill.
Huskies Drop 2-0 Decision at Northwestern
The Northern Illinois men's soccer team suffered a 2-0 setback on Wednesday night at Northwestern.



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