Bulldogs Head To South Carolina Tournament

Bulldogs Head To South Carolina Tournament

SOUTHERN SET:  Butler will take its longest trip of the season to compete in its lone tournament of 2009, a four-team event hosted by South Carolina on Friday and Sunday (Sept. 11 & 13).  The Bulldogs will face the host school in the first round of the adidas Gamecock Classic in Columbia, S.C., on Friday at 7 p.m. (ET) and then take on Presbyterian in the final round on Sunday at noon.  South Carolina began the 2009 campaign with back-to-back wins over Charlotte and Clemson, while Presbyterian split its first two matches with a win over Georgia State and a loss to Furman.  George Mason will be the fourth team in the tournament.  Butler will be facing both South Carolina and Presbyterian for the first time in men’s soccer competition.            

Butler has captured two regular season tournament titles in three seasons under head coach Kelly Findley.
SUCCESSFUL START:  The Bulldogs opened the 2009 campaign with back-to-back wins in Indiana last week.  Butler won its season-opener for the third consecutive year with a 2-0 decision at IPFW and then returned to Indianapolis to capture its home-opener over Xavier, 1-0, five days later.  Sophomore Matt Hedges tallied his third career goal to provide the game-winner at IPFW, while senior Boris Gatzky notched the lone goal of the match in the Xavier win.  

The Bulldogs are 2-0 for the third straight year.   

BLANK CHECK:  Butler head coach Kelly Findley started two different goalkeepers in his first two matches and both turned in a stellar performance.  Senior Fabian Knopfler was given the nod in Butler’s opener at IPFW, and he recorded four saves while helping the Bulldogs blank the Mastodons.  Senior Nick Hegeman started the second match and recorded three saves in Butler’s shutout of Xavier.  Hegeman started 16 matches for the Bulldogs a year ago and posted seven shutouts.  He ranked third in the Horizon League and 28th in the NCAA Division I in goals against average (0.77).  He currently stands sixth on Butler’s all-time list with nine career shutouts.  Knopfler was the starting goalkeeper in 16 Butler matches two years ago and in four matches last year.  He stands ninth on Butler’s all-time list with six career shutouts, and he has posted shutouts in four of his last five starts.

Butler recorded a school-record 10 shutouts a year ago.

HOT START:  Senior Boris Gatzky has a pair of goals in Butler’s first two matches this season.  He scored on a penalty kick late in Butler’s victory at IPFW, and then he picked up the game-winner at home against Xavier.  The two goals boosted his Butler career total to 12 in just over two seasons.  He’s one of five players in the Horizon League to already have scored two goals this season, and he’s currently tied for second in the league in scoring with four points.  Gatzky leads the league in shots per game (5.50), and he stand second in the league in total shots (11). 

BULLDOG BITS:  Freshman Jared Isenthal scored his first collegiate point with an assist on Butler’s game-winning goal against Xavier...Junior Jacob Capito matched his career-high with four shots against IPFW in Butler’s season-opener.  Capito also attempted four shots in a Butler victory over IUPUI a year ago...Senior Boris Gatzky has five game-winning goals in his two-plus seasons at Butler.  He leads Butler’s current players..Senior Kyle VondenBenken picked up his eighth career assist on Butler’s first goal at IPFW...Butler is tied for second in the Horizon League in shots per match (17.00).  The Bulldogs have 15 shots on goal in their first two contests.