With only two men’s league games having been played in Conference USA, Florida Atlantic has the early lead. If one win constitutes a lead!
The Owls defeated FIU, 2-1. The other C-USA game played was a scoreless draw between Alabama Birmingham and Charlotte.
Overall, Florida Atlantic is off to an unbeaten start in 2014, going 5-0-1 with all five wins coming at home. UAB (4-1-1) and Tulsa (5-1-1) are the other C-USA teams with a single loss.
Florida Atlantic will get right into its conference schedule off wins over Jacksonville (2-1) and North Florida (3-2). The North Florida win came in the fourth minute of overtime on Ryan Price’s penalty kick. He scored both goals in the victory over the Jacksonville Dolphins.
Charlotte has faced a challenging schedule, with its opponents holding a 21-10-4 combined mark this season. The 49ers have allowed just four goals through six matches.
Freddy Ruiz scored his fourth goal of the season as the UAB Blazers scored a 4-0 win over Mercer, bouncing back from two scoreless games in their own invitational tournament.
Jeffrey Rorda scored for USC in the fifth minute of play in a 1-1 draw with South Florida. Charlotte’s Kyle Parker scored the game-winner in a 3-0 shutout of Campbell.
South Carolina has faced a difficult non-conference schedule with its opponents combining for a 28-15-10 mark thus far. Three USC opponents were ranked in the nation’s Top 20: #9 St. John’s, #16 Clemson and #20 Coastal Carolina.
Cristian Mata, the C-USA preseason Player of the Year, had a goal and an assist in a 4-0 victory over previously unbeaten Valparaiso.
Recent conference weekly honors went to Old Dominion forward Tim Hopkinson and Tulsa defender Bradley Bourgeois.
Hopkinson, a senior, scord three goals to lead ODU to a 5-0 win over Virginia Military Institute. This is the first year ODU has played in C-USA, having moved from the Colonial Athletic Association.
Bourgeois helped anchor the Golden Hurricane defense in that 4-0 shutout of Valparaiso.
Cristian, Price and Hopkinson share the goal scoring lead in the league with six each, while Cristian leads in points with 16.
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