MSU Men’s Soccer Travels to No. 16 IU for B1G Opener

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EAST LANSING, Mich. – Michigan State men’s soccer concludes its two-game road trip at No. 16 Indiana on Friday, Sept. 23 at 7:30 p.m. at Bill Armstrong Stadium. This is the Big Ten opener for the Spartans, while the Hoosiers are 0-1-0 heading into their B1G home opener.

The Spartans are 2-4-1 after a 4-1 loss to No. 4 Washington in Seattle on Sept. 16. Indiana is 3-2-1 after falling to No. 22 Ohio State in Columbus last week.

Michigan State is the final Big Ten squad to open league play.

PACKING THE HOUSE

Michigan State historically is among the nation’s best in packing DeMartin Stadium. This season, MSU is seventh in the nation in attendance, averaging 2,247 fans per game. The Spartans are third in the Big Ten behind Maryland (2,543) and Indiana (2,286). MSU’s largest crowd of the season was the 2,716 fans that packed DeMartin to watch MSU beat Chicago State 4-1 on Sept. 12.

LOOKING AT INDIANA    

Indiana is 3-2-1 this season after losing its Big Ten opener to No. 22 Ohio State, 2-1, in Columbus.

After the loss to No. 22 Ohio State, the Hoosiers fell to 2-2-0 against ranked opponents after defeating No. 9 Akron and No. 20 Butler in the two matches prior.

IU’s Ryan Wittenbrink is seventh in the Big Ten in goals scored with three. Goalkeeper JT Harms is fourth in the league in goals against average (1.36).

SERIES HISTORY AGAINST THE HOOSIERS

Indiana holds a dominating 43-16-6 series lead over Michigan State, including leading 20-7-5 in Bloomington. In the series, the Hoosiers have won the last four meetings and are unbeaten in the last eight outings.

Michigan State’ last win against Indiana was a 3-2 win in Bloomington in 2014. 

Last season in East Lansing, the Hoosiers came away with a 1-0 win. Patrick McDonald’s goal in side the box in the 48th minute was the decider.

 

BIG TEN OPENER

MSU opens B1G play at No. 16 Indiana on Sept. 23. The Spartans are 6-1-2 in their last nine Big Ten openers. After taking on Rutgers in the Big Ten opener the last four seasons, MSU tied Wisconsin 1-1 last season in Madison. 

This is the first time that Michigan State has faced Indiana in the Big Ten opener since a 0-0 overtime tie in Bloomington on Sept. 25. In 2004, the Hoosiers came out on top in the Big Ten opener in East Lansing, 3-1.

FIND THE PERKS

Senior defender Will Perkins has had a stellar start to the 2022 season. He leads the team in scoring with two goals and two assists for six points. Perkins has among the team leaders in minutes played with 555. The only other field player with more minutes played is sophomore defender Josh Adam who has played 613 minutes this season.

LOCAL KID DOES GOOD

Okemos native Jack Guggemos has made the most of his early opportunities, He has started five of Michigan State’s seven games. Against Bowling Green on Sept. 9, he scored his collegiate goal off the pass from junior forward Greyson Mercer. He followed that performance up with a goal against Chicago State. The freshman is tied for first in scoring with senior defender Will Perkins with two goals and an assist for five points.

LOOKING FOR THE BAGEL

Michigan State is looking for its first shutout of the season. MSU has allowed one goal to Army, Western Michigan, Bowling Green and Chicago State, while relinquishing two goals to Akron and three to Notre Dame. The Spartans last shutout was a 1-0 win against Ohio State on Oct. 17, 2021 in East Lansing.

GETTING IN THE GAME

The Spartans have been getting a lot of players in the game. Twenty-two of the 28 athletes on the roster have played in at least one of the seven games this season. 

UP NEXT

After facing a pair of ranked teams on the road, Michigan State returns home for a pair of games. The Spartans will battle of the Big Bear Trophy against in-state rival Michigan on Tuesday, Sept. 27. MSU will conclude the homestand against Wisconsin on Sunday, Oct. 2.

SPREADING THE WEALTH

Eight different players have scored MSU’s 10 goals this season. Redshirt-senior defender Will Perkins and freshman midfielder Jack Guggemos both have scored two goals apiece for MSU. Senior forward Gianni Ferri and junior midfielder Greyson Mercer both found the back of the net for the first time this season against Chicago State on Sept. 12, while junior midfielder Jacob Cromer scored his first career goal against No. 4 Washington on Sept. 16..

FINDING THE 11

Only four Spartans have started the first seven games of the season, including seniors Jack Beck and Will Perkins. Newcomer Owen Finnerty and sophomore Josh Adam also have started every match. 

Twelve players have seen action in all seven matches, including freshmen Jake Spadafora, Jack Guggemos and Jeremy Sharp.

PRESEASON HONORS

Michigan State men’s soccer team had three players named to the Big Ten Players to Watch list.

Graduate midfielder Jack Beck, redshirt-senior defender Will Perkins and junior forward Greyson Mercer were all honored by the league.

Beck, a native of DeWitt, Michigan, is a two-time All-Big Ten selection for the Spartans, earning first-team honors last season. He was second on the team in scoring in 2021 with nine points. Beck ended last season third in the Big Ten in assists with seven.

Perkins, a Detroit, Michigan native, returns for his fifth season with Michigan State. He started all 17 games last season. Also in 2021, Perkins was fourth on the team in scoring with two goals and two assists for six points.

Mercer, who hails from Heber City, Utah, enters his third season with the Spartans. He has played in 13 games over the last two seasons with four starts.

LOOKING AT THE PRESEASON

The Spartans ended exhibition action with a 1-2 record in three home games. MSU opened with a 3-0 win against Lawrence Tech on Aug. 10 behind goals by freshman forward  Jonathan Stout, senior midfielder Conner George and sophomore forward Efosa Emovon. MSU then dropped a pair of hard-fought 1-0 battles against Butler on Aug. 14 and No. 7 Pitt on Aug. 19.

NEWCOMERS

The Spartans welcome nine new players to the 2022 roster with seven freshmen and two transfers. Graduate goalkeeper Owen Finnerty may look familiar to Spartan fans, transferring from Michigan. Junior defender Elijah Howe comes to MSU from West Florida. The seven freshmen include freshman midfielder Jack Guggemos from Okemos and  Jake Spadafora from Northville.

OLDTIMERS

Michigan State brings back several veterans to the 2022 squad. Both Jack Beck and Will Perkins will return for their fifth seasons with MSU. The duo of captains are the final to Spartans on the roster who were a part of the 2018 College Cup squad.

O CAPTAIN! MY CAPTAIN!

The Spartan have named three captains this season. Leading MSU will be seniors Jack Beck, Will Perkins and Louis Sala. This is the second-straight season that Beck and Perkins are captains.









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