Sept. 18, 2008
TITLE DEFENSE: Butler will return to the Dayton Flyer Courtyard By Marriott Tournament in Dayton, Ohio, this weekend as the defending champion. The Bulldogs (3-1-1) will face Robert Morris (1-3-1) on Friday, Sept. 19, at 5:30 p.m., in the first round of the four-team invitational and then take on Marshall (0-5) at 12 noon on Sunday, Sept. 21, in the final round. All matches will be played at Dayton's Baujan Field. Butler opened the season at the Flyer Classic a year ago and came away with a team title. The Bulldogs began the tournament with a 3-2 victory over St. Francis (Pa.) and then wrapped up the title with a 4-0 win over Sacramento State. It was Butler's second tournament championship under head coach Kelly Findley. Butler will be facing both Robert Morris and Marshall for the first time in men's soccer.
Butler has won three tournament championships in three seasons under head coach Kelly Findley.
DEADLOCKED: The Bulldogs battled host DePaul for 110 minutes, before settling for a 0-0 tie on Sunday (Sept. 14). It was the first time this season that the Bulldogs were held scoreless, and it was Butler's first tie in 2008. Both teams battled heavy rains and a soggy field. The Bulldogs wound up with seven shots in the match, including two shots on goal, while DePaul had 10 shots, including five shots on goal. Butler had several solid scoring opportunities, including a shot by senior Frank Patano that was stopped by DePaul goalkeeper Brian Visser in the second half and a diving header by senior Eduardo Garcia that narrowly missed in the second overtime period.
Butler's four shutouts this season match the team's entire total for 2007.
BLANK CHECK: Junior Nick Hegeman was given his second start in goal this season in Butler's match at DePaul, and he responded with his second shutout of the season. The 6-5 goalkeeper posted a season-high five saves in the contest, including one in each of the two overtime periods. He stopped two DePaul goal attempts in the first half and a third in the second half. The five saves were the most by a Butler goalkeeper this season and the third-most of Hegeman's Butler career.
Nick Hegeman owns three shutouts in eight career starts for the Bulldogs.
BULLDOG BITS: Forward Frank Patano was named the Most Valuable Player at the 2007 Courtyard By Marriott Flyer Classic. He led the tournament in scoring with three goals and one assist, including the game-winner in Butler's victory over St. Francis (Pa.). His performance in the tournament earned him a spot on the College Soccer News National Team of the Week...The three Butler players who joined Patano on the All-Tournament Team at last year's Dayton Flyer Classic all return this season. Junior goalkeeper Fabian Knopfler, junior midfielder Boris Gatzky and sophomore midfielder Ben Sippola were honored following last year's tournament. Each of the three made his Butler debut at last year's Dayton tournament...Butler goalkeepers Nick Hegeman and Fabian Knopfler both rank in the "Top 5" in the Horizon League in goals against average. Hegeman is leading the league with a 0.00 GAA, while Knopfler stands fourth with a 1.00 mark. Hegeman also tops the circuit in save percentage (1.000). The two Butler goalkeepers are tied for second in the Horizon League in shutouts with two apiece...Senior Frank Patano is tie for the Horizon League lead in goals (4), and he leads the league in game-winning goals (3). Patano is third in the circuit in total points (8)...Sophomore Ben Sippola scored his first collegiate goal in last year's Dayton Flyer Classic and it wound up as the game-winner in Butler's 4-0 victory over Sacramento State.