Loyola (9-4-3, 4-2-3 MVC)
at Valparaiso (4-11-1, 3-6-0 MVC)
Saturday, Nov. 9, 7 p.m. CT – Brown Field
This Week in Valpo Soccer: The regular season winds down on Saturday night under the lights of Brown Field as the Valparaiso University men’s soccer team looks to build on its recent strides and create continued momentum with the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament right around the corner. The program will battle longtime rival Loyola on Senior Night with hopes of sending out its six-member senior class on a high note.
Previously: Valpo is playing its best soccer at the right time after enjoying a quality week that started with a near upset of a No. 9 Missouri State on Wednesday, Oct. 30 at Brown Field and continued with a 1-0 triumph at Evansville on Sunday afternoon. Ryan Madondo scored goals in both matches including his first match-winner in a Valpo kit on Sunday against the Purple Aces. The Brown & Gold had a late two-goal lead and nearly upstaged Missouri State on Wednesday in an eventual 3-2 overtime loss.
Success vs. The Best: Valpo came within five minutes of adding to the program’s history of beating Top 25 opponents on Wednesday, Oct. 30 against No. 9 Missouri State, the only undefeated and untied team in the nation. Valpo held a 2-0 lead as late as the 72nd minute, but eventually fell 3-2 in overtime despite becoming the first team to score two goals in a match against a sound Bears’ defense this season. Valpo was in front for 42 minutes, the second-longest any team has led against Missouri State this year behind Tulsa back on Sept. 14. Valpo has five wins and one draw against Top 25 sides since the start of the 2013 campaign.
Blanking the Aces: Valpo enjoyed its first shutout win of the season in Sunday’s regular season road finale, beating Evansville 1-0. Goalkeeper Jorn-Jan van de Beld made three saves to earn the clean sheet in just his fourth appearance in a Valpo kit and first in Valley play. Ryan Madondo scored the game-winning goal to help the Brown & Gold sweep the regular season series with their southern instate foes.
Turning the Trends: Entering the week of Oct. 30, Valpo was perfect when scoring two or more goals (3-0-0) and winless when scoring fewer than two goals (0-10-1). However, both trends were stopped that week as Valpo lost 3-2 to Missouri State on Wednesday before capturing a 1-0 victory at Evansville on Sunday.
Glancing Ahead: Entering Saturday’s Senior Night game vs. Loyola at Brown Field, Valpo is locked into the No. 5 seed for next week’s Missouri Valley Conference Tournament in Chicago. However, Valpo’s opponent in the opening round of the tournament is yet to be determined. The team could play Loyola, Bradley or Drake depending on which of those teams finishes fourth in the regular-season table. If the tournament started today, Valpo would face Drake in the opening round for the third straight season. The Ramblers have a lot to play for on Saturday as they can clinch a first-round bye with a victory. Bradley and Drake are both hoping for help from Valpo to open up the opportunity to climb into the No. 2 slot. Missouri State has already clinched the regular season title and Evansville is locked into sixth. Bradley hosts Evansville and Drake hosts Missouri State in the other Valley games on Saturday. Although the first-round opponent is unknown, if Valpo’s wins its opening MVC Tournament game, it is guaranteed to meet regular-season champion Missouri State in the semifinal round on Friday, Nov. 15.
Honored Again: For the second consecutive week, Valpo received a Missouri Valley Conference honor on Tuesday. Just seven days after Adan Garcia became the second Valpo player this season to garner MVC Offensive Player of the Week recognition, Jorn-Jan van be Beld became the first to take home MVC Defensive Player of the Week honors on Tuesday, Nov. 5. It very well could have been awarded to the entire defense as the back line also played a key role in a 1-0 shutout victory over Evansville on Nov. 3. Playing in just his fourth game and making his MVC debut, van de Beld became the first Valpo goalkeeper to turn in a clean sheet this year. Ironically, it came exactly a year to the day of Valpo’s last shutout, a 1-0 win at Drake on Nov. 3, 2018.
Saluting Six Seniors: Six Valpo seniors will be recognized prior to the match on Saturday as Adan Garcia, Demar Rose, Jorn-Jan van de Beld, Dylan Waugaman, Julien Bertho and Chris Villalobos will be honored.
- Three members of the senior class transferred into the program, while three others have been with the team for the extent of their collegiate careers.
- Adan Garcia enters Saturday’s match with 69 career appearances, the most among active Valpo players. He’s been a fixture on the pitch for head coach Mike Avery’s squad, appearing in 69 of the team’s 71 games over the last four seasons. The only two matches he has missed were Aug. 27, 2016 at Loyola (the first game of his freshman season) and Sept. 2, 2019 vs. IU Northwest (this year’s season opener). He has 11 goals, 11 assists and 33 points during his Valpo tenure. Garcia’s list of accolades includes 2018 All-MVC Honorable Mention, 2018 Preseason All-MVC, 2017 United Soccer Coaches All-Region Third Team and 2017 Second Team All-MVC.
- Captain Demar Rose is the longest-tenured member of the program and the only player still active who competed on the 2015 squad. He has seen action in 64 games including all 33 over the last two seasons. Rose missed the entire 2017 campaign with an injury. His career resume includes three goals, two assists and eight points, but his contributions go beyond the numbers as the engine of the team in the midfield. Rose represented Valpo on the All-MVC First Team in 2018 and was tabbed to the 2019 Preseason All-MVC squad.
- Chris Villalobos has seen the pitch 51 times over his four seasons despite being limited to five games due to an injury in 2018. He owns three career assists, all coming in his first two years.
- After transferring from Oregon State, Dylan Waugaman has played in 39 games over three seasons at Valpo. He has twice found the back of the net this year while placing nine shots on frame. The Houston native has thrived both on the pitch and in the classroom, where he finished his undergraduate degree with a 3.99 GPA in accounting and has begun his master’s in business administration. He was a 2018 CoSIDA Academic All-American while also earning 2018 CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team, 2018 MVC Scholar-Athlete First Team and the 2018 Bill Steinbrecher Sportsmanship Award.
- After joining the program as a junior college transfer, Julien Bertho has played in 25 games over two seasons including 11 in 2019. He accounted for an assist in this year’s season opener vs. IU Northwest. The Plumelec, France native has made key contributions on defense for the Brown & Gold.
- Goalkeeper Jorn-Jan van de Beld has played in four games and made three starts during his lone season at Valpo. He has accrued 17 saves in 215 minutes including three in a 1-0 win at Evansville on Nov. 3, providing Valpo’s first shutout of the season. That effort helped him take home MVC Defensive Player of the Week honors, becoming the first Valpo player to do so since Nacho Miras early in the 2017 campaign.
Following Valpo: Saturday’s match will be carried on ESPN+ with Dave Huseman (play-by-play) and Ben Ariano (color commentary) comprising the broadcast tandem. Links to live video and stats will be available on ValpoAthletics.com.
Series History: Valpo and Loyola have a long history against one another that dates back to the first season of men’s soccer at Valpo in 1983. The Brown & Gold stand at 5-15-8 against their foes from the Windy City. This marks the 13th consecutive year the two teams have played one another, making the Ramblers the only team that Valpo has played in every year of Mike Avery’s head coaching tenure. Entering the 2019 campaign, seven of the last eight meetings between the two teams had gone to overtime, most recently a scoreless draw a year ago at Brown Field. The only time since 2011 that Valpo and Loyola had played a match decided in 90 minutes was Sept. 1, 2017, when Valpo knocked off a nationally-ranked Ramblers side 2-1 in the program’s first Missouri Valley Conference match. The first match of the year between the two teams was a 2-0 victory for the Ramblers on Oct. 12 in Rogers Park with Ethan Stoneman and Aidan Megally scoring the goals.
Scouting the Opposition: After dropping back-to-back matches to Cal State Fullerton and Loyola Marymount in September, Loyola has just two losses in a 12-match span, both to Missouri State. Most recently, the Ramblers incurred a 2-1 setback to the nationally-ranked Bears on Sunday, Nov. 3, ending an eight-match unbeaten streak that dated back to the first matchup with Missouri State. The Ramblers are led offensively by Justin Sukow (six goals, 15 points) and Aidan Megally (nine goals, 21 points), while goalkeeper Marcel Kampman has played every minute and owns an 0.95 GAA. Neil Jones is in his seventh season as head coach for Loyola, a team picked to finish second in this year’s MVC Preseason Poll. A pair of Ramblers were Preseason All-MVC choices – Megally and fellow midfielder Giann Magno.
Head Coach Mike Avery: In his 13th season at the helm of the Valpo men’s soccer program, Mike Avery owns a program-record 91 career victories. Under Avery’s guidance, the team has been a stellar defensive side, as nine of the top 10 defensive seasons in program history have come during his tenure. Avery has led the program to a new standard in his time as head coach, as a team that had enjoyed just one winning season in the 24 years prior to his arrival has finished above the .500 mark six times in the last decade. He has also seen numerous players go on to play professional soccer, including active pros Zev Taublieb, Kyle Zobeck, Stefan Antonijevic, Jordan Aidoud, Rafael Mentzingen, Nacho Miras, Ramone Howell, Matthew King, Jordan Simon, Hamid Babaali and Lucca Lacerda. Avery shattered the program record with his 77th career victory on Sept. 16, 2017 at Drake. He reached 77 victories in his 195th career match, while previous recordholder Mis’ Mrak needed 288 matches to accumulate 76 wins.
Holst Atop Valley: Valpo goalkeeper Edvin Holst is the Missouri Valley Conference leader in both total saves (65) and saves per game (5.42), also ranking among the national leaders in those areas. He has been active behind a youthful back line, making key contributions as a rookie. The last Valpo keeper to lead a league in saves was Ryan Schwarz in 2007. Holst ranks eighth nationally in saves per game and tied for 27th in total saves.
Three-Assist Showing: Senior midfielder Adan Garcia made Valpo history by contributing to all three goals in a 3-1 road victory over Drake on Oct. 23. He was credited with an assist on all three, becoming just the second player in program history and first since 1985 (Thomas Froats) to notch three assists in one game. He became the 20th player in the nation and first in the Missouri Valley Conference with a three-assist showing in 2019. In addition, Garcia cracked the program record book in career assists by upping his total to 11. He now owns sole possession of 10th in program history and is the first Valpo player with a double-figure assist total since Adrian Ortiz finished his collegiate tenure with 13 in 2010.
Four-Goal Club: Mason Marcey posted his fourth goal of the season and the fifth of his career on Oct. 23 at Drake, becoming just the 10th player in the Missouri Valley Conference with four or more goals. He was the first Valpo player to hit that mark. Marcey had a three-point night in a 3-1 win over Drake, also notching his second assist of the year.
Comeback Kids: Valpo faced a 1-0 deficit as late as the 77th minute on Sept. 22 against Evansville, but a pair of quick strikes from Dylan Waugaman and Adan Garcia helped Valpo to a 2-1 victory over the Purple Aces. Valpo won after allowing the first goal of the match for the first time since last October, when the team came from 1-0 down to beat Eastern Illinois with two second-half tallies. The win over the Aces was the first time in Mike Avery’s 13-year head coaching tenure that his side was trailing as late as the 77th minute and found a way to win in regulation. Valpo again showed its ability to come from behind on Oct. 23 at Drake, erasing a 1-0 hole to beat the Bulldogs 3-1. Both of Valpo’s MVC wins have come when the opponent scored first.
Three-Goal Outburst: Valpo’s three-goal output on Oct. 23 at Drake was the team’s most prosperous since scoring eight times in a game against IU Northwest on Sept. 2. The last time Valpo had a three-goal showing in conference play was back on Sept. 16, 2017, also at Drake, a 3-2 overtime victory.
Academic Success Sustained: The Valpo men’s soccer program earned the United Soccer Coaches Team Academic Award for the 17th consecutive season, as announced on Thursday, Oct. 3. Valpo has the third-longest streak in the nation behind only Carleton College (2000-present) and Penn (2001-present). The award is given annually to squads with a composite grade point average of 3.00 or better for the academic year. This year’s award is based on GPAs for the 2018-19 school year, when Valpo checked in at 3.09.
More Road Facts: Leading into the start of Valley play, Valpo faced fierce competition during a four-game road journey. SMU was ranked as high as 16th at the time of the meeting and afterward vaulted into the Top 10 in most national polls. Missouri State is also a Top 25 side. The combined records of SMU, Missouri State, UIC and Oral Roberts at the time of the meetings with Valpo was 21-2-0. During October, Valpo had five straight away from home, the team’s longest string of road games since opening the 2017 season with six straight.
PK Conversion: Ryan Madondo converted a penalty kick on Oct. 1 vs. Bradley to help Valpo get on the board first in the Missouri Valley Conference contest. He helped Valpo improve to 2-for-2 on PKs this season after Cole Rainwater knocked one in on Sept. 2 vs. IU Northwest. As a team, Valpo has converted four PKs in a row dating back to Sept. 15, 2018.
Garcia Goal Count: By finding the net for the first time this season on Sept. 22 against Evansville, senior Adan Garcia lifted his career goal total to 11, the most among active Valpo players. He also has 11 career assists for a total of 33 points during his four-year tenure.
Late Heroics: Ryan Madondo’s game-tying goal at 88:23 on Sept. 15 at Oral Roberts was Valpo’s latest goal since Alex Brown put the team up 1-0 at the 89:02 mark on Sept. 7 of last season at Milwaukee. The last time Valpo trailed as late as the 89th minute and got the game to overtime was Sept. 29, 2014, when Nick Suker scored at 89:37 to tie a match with Dayton at two, an eventual 2-2 draw at Brown Field.
Scoring Streak: Valpo junior Mason Marcey started the season on a scoring streak as he registered goals in each of the team’s first three games. With his goal on Sept. 6 at UIC, Marcey became the first Valpo player to score in each of the first three games of a season since D.J. Catrow did so in 2005 against Buffalo, Canisius and Butler.
Strong Starts: Valpo had two players with three goals and seven points over the first three games of the season in Mason Marcey and Cole Rainwater. Before this year, Isaiah Madrid in 2016 was the only Valpo player since 2006 to reach three goals or seven points in the season’s first three fixtures. This was the first time since at least 1987 that two Valpo players have had three goals or more just three matches into a season.
Making It Rain: Cole Rainwater had seven points in an 8-2 victory over IU Northwest on Sept. 2, becoming the first player in Mike Avery’s 13-year coaching tenure to turn in seven points in a match for Valpo. The last player to do so was Paul Leitelt on Aug. 27, 2006 vs. Evansville. Rainwater was the fifth player in program history with a seven-point performance and the 10th to turn a hat trick. Valpo’s last seven hat tricks have all been scored by players in their first or second year in the program. His hat trick was Valpo’s third in the last four years (Kendan Anderson and Adan Garcia) after the team had gone a decade between hat tricks prior to Anderson’s in 2016. For his efforts, Rainwater was named the Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Week on Sept. 3.
Strong Beginnings: Valpo debuted its new Brown Field turf by equaling a program record for goals in a game on Labor Day, downing IU Northwest 8-2 in the home opener. Valpo matched the team watermark of eight goals that was established on Aug. 26, 2011 against Calumet and had stood alone ever since. The Sept. 2 game against the RedHawks was the sixth time in program history Valpo prevailed by six goals or more and the first time the team had a margin of victory that large since the aforementioned 2011 game against Calumet.
Reloading Time: A large senior class in 2018 has led to a team that features more newcomers (15) than returnees (13) in 2019. The team had 15 players depart from last year’s team, including dynamic strikers Rafael Mentzingen and Lucca Lacerda, who have both gone on to play professionally. Speaking of playing professionally, goalkeeper Nacho Miras made the decision to forgo his redshirt senior season when he had the opportunity to graduate on time and join the long list of Valpo alums who have reached the pro ranks.
A Reason to be Rosy: Although the roster saw significant turnover due to a large graduating class, the cupboard is far from bare for Mike Avery’s team. Headlining the group of returning players is fifth-year senior Demar Rose, a Preseason All-MVC choice this season and one of four Missouri Valley Conference players returning in 2019 after earning first-team all-conference honors in 2018. He didn’t skip a beat after missing the 2017 season with an injury, returning in 2018 to play in all 17 games and make 14 starts in the midfield while scoring one goal and striking 24 shots. He scored a dazzling equalizer in a 1-1 draw at Evansville on Oct. 27, 2018, earning a point in the Valley standings that allowed Valpo to clinch a conference tournament berth.
Senior Standout: Another veteran who has earned numerous honors over his Valpo career is senior midfielder Adan Garcia, who received 2018 MVC Honorable Mention, 2017 United Soccer Coaches All-Region Third Team and 2017 Second-Team All-MVC. He enters his senior year with 10 career goals, eight assists and 28 points, needing one more assist to crack Valpo’s all-time Top 10. He turned in a hat trick on Oct. 12, 2017 at Western Illinois, the ninth in program history and the first in a road match since 1985. Garcia’s name is already in the single-season Valpo record book after he had nine goals and 22 points in 2017, both tied for seventh in program history.
Academic Ace: Dylan Waugaman figures to continue his success both on the field and in the classroom this year. After graduating with a 3.99 grade point average in accounting, the 2018 CoSIDA Academic All-American Second Team honoree has begun a master’s in business administration. The fifth-year senior defender became the first Valpo player to earn CoSIDA Academic All-American honors since Todd Vervynckt in 2013. He also earned CoSIDA Academic All-Region and MVC Scholar-Athlete First-Team recognition as a redshirt junior. Waugaman received the 2018 Bill Steinbrecher Sportsmanship Award, which is given annually to the male student-athlete who best exemplifies integrity and sportsmanship while representing Valparaiso University. He has been nominated for the business school’s distinguished student award, nominated by a faculty member as an influential person on campus and met with University President Mark Heckler to discuss ideas about how to make Valpo a better place. Waugaman was one of three students in the 2018 graduating class who was recognized by President Heckler during the graduation ceremony as a distinguished student. In addition, Waugaman is an accounting tutor, member of NABA, member of Delta Sigma Pi (business honors society) and is involved in numerous community service activities.
The Region’s D1 Team: While the tradition of recruiting far and wide continues for Valpo men’s soccer, the team features a heavy local flavor this season. Five Northwest Indiana natives have joined the squad as freshmen – Danny Salazar (East Chicago, Ind. / Bishop Noll), Jack Eaton (Valparaiso, Ind. / Chesterton), Andy Lomeli (Dyer, Ind. / Lake Central), Cole Rainwater (Schererville, Ind. / Lake Central) and Logan Tatalovich (Valparaiso, Ind. / Boone Grove). Eaton was named the Indiana Soccer Coaches Association Player of the Year and Gatorade Indiana Boys Soccer Player of the Year following his senior season after helping Chesterton to a 21-0-2 mark and 3A state title.
Flying Many Flags: Despite bringing in a large crop of locals, the program has stayed true to its roots of recruiting globally. This year’s team features athletes from 10 countries – The Netherlands, Brazil, France, Jamaica, Japan, Germany, England, Italy, Sweden and the United States.
#oneVALPO: The Valpo men’s soccer program will continue to promote its #oneVALPO campaign, which celebrates diversity, via social and digital media and at its games. For more information, go to the #oneVALPO Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/oneVALPO.
Working with TOCO: Valpo welcomed a large crowd to Brown Field on Sept. 25 against Drake, raising funds for They Often Cry Outreach, an organization that supports at-risk children in the Caribbean and the United States. Head coach Mike Avery offered to personally match all donations made that evening. The program has a long-standing relationship with TOCO.