KINGSTON, R.I. - The No. 1 seed Flyers play No. 6-seeded St. Bonaventure (1-0 winners over No. 3 seed Fordham) this Friday, Nov. 13 at 5 p.m. in Kingston, R.I. in the semifinals of the Atlantic 10 Championship. The other match Friday at 7:30 p.m. features the No. 2 seed Saint Louis and No. 4 seed Rhode Island, which topped Charlotte 4-3 in penalty kicks Thursday. The winners of the semifinal matches play in the final Sunday, Nov. 15 at 1 p.m. ET. The winner of the A-10 tournament receives an automatic berth to the 51st Annual NCAA Division I Men's Soccer Championship.
FLYER A-10 CHAMPIONSHIP INFO
• Dayton is playing in its 10th Atlantic 10 Championship. The Flyers have advanced to the tournament six times in the last seven years.
• UD was crowned A-10 tournament champion in 1997 and 1998 and celebrated the 10th anniversary with a Tournament Championship in 2008.
• The Flyers are 8-4-3 all-time in A-10 tournament games. In their last appearance, the third-seeded Flyers played three games in four days and captured the A-10 title, going through No. 6 seeded Rhode Island (3-2), No. 2 seeded Temple (2-1 ot) and No. 1 seeded Massachussetts (1-0). Florian DeCamps scored three goals, including two game-winners and was named to the All-Championship Team and named Most Outstanding Player. Returning Flyers on the All-Championship Team for were; defender Ryan Handbury, forward Isaac Kissi and midfielder Ben Murray.
Dayton leads the all-time series 9-3 over the Bonnies. The Flyers closed out the 2009 regular season with a 2-1 overtime win over St. Bonaventure Sunday, Nov. 8. The win clinched the Atlantic 10 regular season title for UD.
FLYERS RACK UP A-10 AWARDS
The 2009 Atlantic 10 regular season champion University of Dayton Flyers had more first team and second team selections (four) than any other school when the honors were announced Wednesday, and UD's Dennis Currier was named the Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year. After leading Dayton to its first-ever NCAA men's soccer berth last season, Currier helped the squad to its first A-10 regular season title since 2000 and earned his first-ever Coach of the Year nod. He led the team to a first-round bye in the 2009 A-10 Championship after earning the top seed and enters the tournament with a 13-4-1 overall record. Seniors Isaac Kissi and Ryan Handbury headlined the A-10 first team selections. Only Fordham also had two named to the first team. Senior Alex Torda and sophomore Tyler Picard picked up second team accolades, while sophomore Jack Pearson was an honorable mention pick. Evan McCreary, tied as the leading freshman scorer in the conference, was named to the Atlantic 10 All-Rookie Team. Torda and junior defender Tommy Watkins were named to the Academic All-Conference Team. In all, the Flyers picked up nine awards in voting conducted by the league's head coaches.
The Flyers, who have won 13 of their last 14 matches, remain at No. 1 in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Ranking. UD also moved up to No. 21 in the NSCAA National Poll. In addition the Flyers are No. 16 in the TopDrawerSoccer Men's Tournament 48 Ranking and moved up one spot to No. 29 in the College Soccer News Top 30. Dayton also made a reappearance on the SoccerTimes.com Top 25 in the No. 25 slot.
The Flyers are ranked No. 13 in the nation in scoring offense with 2.0 goals per game. Senior Jeff Popella has emerged as a leader for the Flyers, scoring the game-winner in the last three games, after overcoming a serious injury. He was recently named A-10 Player of the Week and was named to the College Soccer National News Team of the Week after scoring four goals in two games to lead Dayton to the A-10 regular season title.
The UD defense is ranked No. 16 in the NCAA in shutout percentage (0.50). UD has posted nine shutouts this season. Sophomore goalkeeper Tyler Picard was recently named to the National Teams of the Week for TopDrawerSoccer and College Soccer News after posting back-to-back shutouts against then-No. 11 Charlotte and Saint Louis.