The first-seeded Marist Red Foxes will host seventh-seeded Monmouth on Thursday, Nov. 11 at Tenney Stadium with a 7 p.m. kickoff.
The Red Foxes are coming off a 3-0 win over eighth-seeded Manhattan, where graduate student Kyle Galloway scored two goals — his fifth and sixth of the season — and assisted junior Liam Salmon, who scored his first goal of the season.
Monmouth defeated second-seeded Saint Peter’s away from home 1-0, with the lone goal coming from junior forward Julian Gomez, his sixth of the season.
When these two teams first met earlier in the season, the Red Foxes beat the Hawks 1-0 in West Long Branch, NJ with a goal from Galloway.
In that game, Monmouth outshot Marist 12-9 with one more shot on target, 4-3. The Hawks also had one more corner than Marist, 4-3. The only statistics Marist registered more than Monmouth were fouls with 21-12 and yellow cards 3-2.
Both teams have gone in complete opposite directions since that game took place. Marist has gone 2-0-1, where one win went to OT and the other OT game ended in a draw. In that span, Marist has scored five goals and conceded three.
Monmouth, on the other hand, has lost every single game (0-4) prior to upsetting Saint Peter’s on Sunday. In that span, they scored three goals and conceded eight goals, two in each game.
But it’s anyone’s game in an unpredictable MAAC Tournament. Fifth-seeded Rider defeated fourth-seeded Siena and sixth-seeded Fairfield defeated third-seeded Niagara.
Historically speaking, Marist has the edge in head-to-head at 4-2-2 and has won their last four matches against Monmouth.
The key players to watch for Marist in this game are Galloway following his performance Sunday, 2021 MAAC Goalkeeper of the Year Sam Ilin, and 2021 MAAC Defensive Player of the Year Huib Achterkamp, who were both instrumental in their shutout win over Manhattan.
The Red Foxes also had several players make the all three All-MAAC Teams. For the first team, Marist had junior midfielder Stefan Copetti, junior midfielder Henrique Cruz, Achterkamp, and Ilin.
In the second team, Marist had senior midfielder Skylar Conway and junior defender Antek Sienkiel while freshman forward Richard Morel made the All-MAAC Rookie Team.
Monmouth also had a handful of players who made the All-MAAC First and Second Teams, including fifth year defender George Akampeke (First-team) midfielders graduate student Jonas Linder and junior Luke McBeth, senior defender Robin Osawld and redshirt senior goalkeeper Sean Murray, all Second Team.
Both teams have quality players, but on paper the edge belongs to Marist, but if the first game during the regular season is any indication, it may very well be a tightly-contested game.
Should Monmouth win, they will travel to the winner of the Fairfield-Rider semifinal game, which is also set to be played at 7 p.m. on Thursday.
Should Marist win, they will host the winner of the Fairfield-Rider game at Tenney Stadium given that they are the first seed.
The MAAC final will be played on Sunday. It is simply a matter of where it will be played and only a matter of time before we find out which teams will win and progress forward.
Edited by Bridget Reilly and Mackenzie Meaney
Photo by Jonathan Kinane