SEWARD, Neb. – The Bulldogs win streak reached five last weekend (Oct. 3) as Concordia celebrated homecoming in style. The Bulldogs recorded seven shots on goal while blanking Dakota Wesleyan in the 2-0 victory. With eight matches to go in GPAC play, Concordia currently sits a half-game back of Briar Cliff and Hastings atop the conference standings. The Bulldogs will ride their unblemished conference mark (3-0) into Saturday’s match against Jamestown. Kickoff from Bulldog Stadium is set for 3:30 p.m. CT.
LAST TIME OUT
During Saturday’s victory over Dakota Wesleyan, the Bulldogs won the field position battle handily. Freshman goalkeeper Federico Andrea Simonetti had a very uneventful day as he made one save in his only attempt. Concordia got out to a 1-0 lead early with a little help from the opposition as Dakota Wesleyan scored an own goal in the fifth minute of play. Senior Garrett Perry added his fifth goal of the season on an absolute rocket in the 50th minute. Overall, the Bulldogs outshot the Tigers 16-3 in a much more lopsided match than the final score indicated.
Jamestown (1-2, 1-2) at Concordia (5-1, 3-0)
Saturday, Oct. 10 | 3:30 p.m.
Bulldog Stadium | Seward, Neb.
Nobody leads, 0-0-2
Last meeting: Oct. 26, 2019; 1-1 T (2 OT)
*2020 GPAC rank in parentheses
Offensive Goals/Game: 2.83 (3rd)
Total Goals: 17 (T1)
Shots on Goal/Game: 8.33 (4th)
Defensive Goals Allowed/Game: 0.83 (2nd)
Saves/Game: 3.67 (9th)
Offensive Goals/Game: 2.33 (5th)
Total Goals: 7 (T5)
Shots on Goal/Game: 5.33 (11th)
Defensive Goals Allowed/Game: 3 (11th)
Saves/Game: 5.67 (7th)
The Jimmies of Jamestown have hovered around the .500 mark since joining the GPAC back in 2018. Head Coach Tommy Nienhaus is the winningest coach in Jamestown history, with 68 wins. The Jimmies are coming off a 3-1 win over Dordt on Sept. 26. Jamestown currently sits in fourth place in the GPAC standings with a record of 1-2.
In the ratings
The GPAC Preseason Soccer Coaches’ Poll was unveiled on Aug. 27. Concordia landed at No. 5 (77 points), while Jamestown was placed seventh in the league (68 points). The poll closely resembled the final 2019 standings. The NAIA has not released a single national poll this year. In the current Massey Ratings, the Bulldogs appear at 22nd while the Jimmies check in at 98th. Concordia also ranks in the Top-25 in the Massey Power Ratings as they moved into the No. 23 spot. this week.
GPAC preseason: 5th
Current Massey Ratings: 22nd
GPAC preseason: 7th
Current Massey Ratings: 98th
Winning seasons have become the norm for the Concordia Bulldogs during the Jason Weides era. Under Weides, the Bulldogs have reeled off nine consecutive winning seasons dating back to 2011. During that period, they have finished with a winning record in GPAC play in eight of those seasons.
Casanova earns GPAC honor
Freshman center back Iker Casanova has made an immediate impact since arriving in Seward. The native of Mexico City, Mexico, was part of a suffocating defense that limited Dakota Wesleyan to just three shots during the Bulldogs 2-0 win. After playing a major role during shutouts in three of the past four matches for Concordia, Casanova earned the GPAC Defensive Player of the Week award. He is already the third Bulldog to be honored by the conference this season. Sophomore Moises Jacobo (twice) and freshman Federico Andrea Simonetti have also garnered GPAC player of the week accolades.
Just win baby
Head Coach Jason Weides’ squad is no stranger to finding success out of the gates as Concordia won its first seven contests in 2019. Concordia is close to replicating that performance this season as their win streak is currently at five games. The Bulldogs have dominated opponents during their winning streak as they have outscored opponents 16-2 during the span. Perhaps the most impressive figure is that Bulldogs have outshot opponents 86-36 in the past five matches. The five-game win streak is the third-longest in the Jason Weides era.
Freshman goalkeeper Federico Andrea Simonetti has been impressive since taking over the starting role. The Crema, Italy, the product boasts a .941 save percentage. Overall, Simonetti has only allowed one goal in 17 attempts on the season. Simonetti and the Bulldog defense have pitched three shutouts on the season.
Senior Garrett Perry and Sophomore Moises Jacobo have been scoring at a furious pace so far this season. Both Perry and Jacobo have netted five goals, each currently leading all GPAC players. Jacobo and Perry currently sit at 11th nationally in total goals and 27th nationally in goals per game. Their ten combined goals outnumber eight teams in the GPAC conference.
Series vs. Jamestown
The Concordia-Jamestown series has not been for fans of high scoring contests. The Bulldogs and Jimmies have squared off twice and both resulted in 1-1 double-overtime ties. Jamestown’s Aaron Pike and Concordia’s Garrett Perry were the respective lone scorers in last year’s contest.
The defense has been a problem for Jamestown this season as the Jimmies have allowed nine goals in their three contests this season. Jamestown is allowing an average of 10.33 shots on goal per game, with capitalizing on 34.6 percent of their shots on goal. On the offensive side of play, Jamestown has been solid, averaging 2.3 goals per game. The Jimmies are averaging 16 shots per game and 5.3 shots on goal per game. Senior midfielder Ruben Zepeda is a major scoring threat with four goals and eight points through three contests this season. In addition to Zepeda, the Bulldogs will want to keep an eye on junior midfielder Deigo Valle who has accounted for two goals this season. The Jimmies offense will be one of the strongest the Bulldogs have faced all year.