Preseason favorite Terriers prep for NEC play
by Bryan Fonseca
Oct 04, 2017 | 6977 views | 0 0 comments | 202 202 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The St. Francis Terriers men’s soccer squad has a chance to win their fourth Northeast Conference title in five seasons.

But first, the preseason unanimous favorites in the NEC coaches poll have to navigate through the NEC portion of their schedule, which begins on Sunday, October 8, at Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Last season, the Terriers memorably ran through the entire NEC, going undefeated and not even allowing an opposing goal in conference play, which lasted nine games, seven in the regular season, and two playoff appearances.

The Terriers went 8-0-1 on that nine-game swing, ending with an NEC title, and outscoring their NEC foes 14-0.

"It's pretty nice not to allow a goal," said Terriers' head coach Tom Giovatto, regarding last season. "Hosting the tournament is something you always hope for at the beginning of the year and you can't ask for anything else. It's great, so exciting, it makes the kids want to play even harder."

While the team acknowledges their long term goal of hosting once again, they’re not overlooking the stiff competition of their conference, who will have a special target on the Terriers, who are on a dynastic run.

This time around, the road to the NCAA Tournament looks less forgiving, as the Terriers enter conference play with only the third best record in non-league play.

In first are the aforementioned FDU Knights, who stand at 6-2-1 and host the Terriers at 7 p.m. this coming Sunday.

“Every game we’re getting better and better,” said junior midfielder Sami Gliguem, who is currently tied for a team-high three goals on the season. “We feel better on the pitch every time.”

Earlier this season, the Terriers fell 2-1 to UMass before reeling off four consecutive victories, including a win over Atlantic-10 foe George Washington University, 3-1, at home.

The Terriers then lost three-of-four, going scoreless in two games, before defeating Hartwick College, 2-1, to end non-NEC play.

Gliguem’s team-best three goals are tied with fellow junior Ali Tounkara, leading the Terriers in offense throughout the course of the season. Sophomores Matteo Caribotti and Faouzi Taieb, along with senior Dominick Falanga, who found goal in the win over Hartwick, have two goals each.

So far this season, eight total Terriers have registered at least one goal.

Following the tall task at FDU, the Terriers will return to Brooklyn Bridge Park to host Sacred Heart, Robert Morris and Saint Francis University in three straight games.

Following the battle between both SFC squads, the Terriers will visit Central Connecticut State before returning home to face Bryant, and they’ll end the season in the annual Battle of Brooklyn, which will take place at LIU Brooklyn this season.
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