Setting the Scene, Part 1
When: Wednesday, Oct. 25, 6 p.m.
What: Bucknell (5-7-3, 3-3-0 PL) at Lehigh (10-4-1, 4-1-1 PL)
Where: Ulrich Sports Complex
Live Stats: LehighSports.com
Live Video: Patriot League Network
Setting the Scene, Part 2
When: Saturday, Oct. 28, 1 p.m.
What: Boston University (6-7-2, 5-1-0 PL) at Bucknell (5-7-3, 3-3-0 PL)
Where: Emmitt Field, Lewisburg, Pa.
Live Stats: BucknellBison.com
Live Video: Patriot League Network
About the Bison
• Bucknell enjoyed a very productive day on Saturday. Not only did the Bison hold off Army 1-0 with a stellar defensive performance at Emmitt Field, but all three teams directly ahead of them in the Patriot League standings lost. That allowed Bucknell to jump all the way from a tie for seventh place to sole possession of fourth place with three games remaining in the regular season. The top six teams qualify for the Patriot League Tournament. The Bison will have two more chances to continue their ascent this week, when they travel to third-place Lehigh on Wednesday before hosting co-leader Boston University on Senior Day on Saturday afternoon.
• Boston University and Loyola are both 5-1 and sit atop the table with 15 points. Lehigh (4-1-1, 13 points) is running in third, followed by Bucknell (3-3-0, 9 points). Army, Holy Cross and Colgate are all 2-3-1 for seven points. One of Bucknell's three Patriot League wins was a 1-0 overtime decision over preseason-favorite Loyola back on Oct. 4.
• Saturday's home win over Army was a vintage Bucknell performance. The Bison got an early goal from Ben Derleth in the seventh minute, and they made it hold up with some strong play in their own defensive third. Army outshot the Bison 11-4 and attempted 10 corner kicks, but goalkeeper Ryan Ott and the back four of Tyler Peterson, Quinn Bredin, Dan Bank and Bernie Wright held strong. The final stat sheet credits Ott with two saves, but that doesn’t tell the story of his impact on the game. Ott was in complete control of the box all night, plucking one service after another out of the air.
• Twelve of Bucknell's 14 games this season have either been decided by one goal or a draw. The only exceptions were a 3-0 loss at Stetson and a 2-0 win over Duquesne back in early September. That is nothing new for this group. Last year, 17 of the team's 21 games were either ties or one-goal margins.
• Nick King leads the team with four goals, and he is tied for the team lead in points with Matt Thorsheim with 10. King ranks seventh in the Patriot League in goals this season. Thorsheim ranks sixth in the PL with four assists. He had the helper on Derleth's goal against Army on Saturday. Bernie Wright (3) and Derleth (2) are also multi-goal scorers for the Bison.
• Ott has a league-best .806 save percentage and his 0.97 goals-against average ranks second in the conference behind only Army's Justin Stoll (0.62). Ott now has five shutouts on the season.
• Bucknell has a strong 5-2-0 record at home this season.
• Brendan Nash is in his 19th season as Bucknell's head coach and his 22nd as a member of the Bison coaching staff. His predecessor, Craig Reynolds, patrolled the sideline for 32 years, meaning Bucknell has had only two men's soccer head coaches over the last 50 years. Nash's 172 wins are second all-time to Reynolds' 238, but Nash's .530 winning percentage is No. 1 in program history. He has guided the Bison to four Patriot League titles in the last 11 years.
Scouting Lehigh/Series History
• Bucknell's defensive will have its work cut out on Wednesday, as Lehigh is by far the highest-scoring team in the Patriot League. The Mountain Hawks have netted 30 goals in 15 games; no other team in the league has more than 20. Lehigh comes in on a three-game winning streak and has 16 goals in its last six games, including four on Saturday in a road win over American.
• Junior forward Mark Forrest leads the league with 13 goals, more than twice the total of the No. 2 scorer, Rex Epps of Army with six. Forrest also has seven assists for 33 points. He has captured each of the last two Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week awards and has three on the season. Forrest has three goals in three career games against Bucknell.
• Doyle Tuvesson has four goals and a league-high nine assists for 17 points. Alex Greene also has four goals along with three assists.
• Will Smith, this week's Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week, is 9-3-1 with a .762 save percentage and 1.09 goals-against average. As a team, Lehigh has conceded 19 goals on the season.
• Lehigh has a slim 27-26-9 lead in a series that dates back to 1960. The Mountain Hawks have won the last two meetings, including a 2-1 decision in Lewisburg last season. Bucknell's last series win was a 4-0 rout in the 2014 Patriot League Tournament quarterfinals. The Bison would go on to win the championship that season.
• In last year's game, Forrest scored both of Lehigh's goals in the 2-1 verdict at Emmitt Field. Sebastiaan Blickman scored in the ninth minute, but Forrest tied it in the 20th with a penalty kick and won it in the 84th with a close-range volley off a corner kick.
Scouting Boston University/Series History
• The Terriers blanked Navy 1-0 Saturday in Boston to remain in a first-place tie with Loyola at 5-1 in Patriot League play. The Greyhounds hold the head-to-head tiebreaker, however, by virtue of a 2-1 win at Nickerson Field on Oct. 14. The Terriers travel to Army on Wednesday before visiting Lewisburg on Saturday.
• Boston University has been outscored 19-15 in 15 games this season. Matt McDonnell has a team-high four goals, while Toti Knutsson, a freshman from Iceland, has three goals and three assists.
• Bucknell and Boston University have had an interesting series since the Terriers joined the Patriot League in 2013. The teams have met six times, including twice in the postseason, and all six have gone to overtime. Bucknell has a 2-0-4 series lead, including away overtime wins in the 2013 regular season and 2014 Patriot League championship game.
• The teams met twice last season, the latter in the Patriot League Tournament quarterfinals in Boston, where the Bison advanced in penalty kicks following a 1-1 draw. Zack Rockmore scored the decisive PK after Ryan Ott made a big save on Felix De Bona. Quinn Bredin scored his first collegiate goal to give Bucknell a 1-0 lead in the 29th minute, but Anthony Viteri tied it in the 79th minute. Viteri also scored an equalizer in the 74th minute in a 1-1 regular-season draw in Lewisburg. Patrick Mahoney opened the scoring in the 47th minute with his first career tally.
• After the two games this week, the Bison will have just one remaining in the regular season, at Navy on Nov. 4.