The NCAA has announced this year’s Men’s Soccer Tournament Field, and Oregon State (dropping to #27 after being ranked #22 last week) is back in the postseason for the first time since 2014. On Thursday, they’ll host Southern Methodist University in the first round of this year’s tournament.
This is first season under new head coach Terry Boss, who has orchestrated a big turnaround in the program. After going 7-11 last season, and 4-6 in the Pac-12, the Beavers finished 10-5-3 overall, and their 6-3-1 finish in the conference was good enough for second in the Pac-12, behind last year’s champion Stanford.
The Beavers have been led this season by two of the Pac-12’s top scorers; Forwards Gloire Amanda and Don Tchilao. Amanda is third in the Pac-12 in goals scored, with 8, while Tchilao is fifth, with 7. Tchilao’s 7 goals and 7 assists gives him 21 total points, which is second in the Pac-12.
The Beavers also have one of the best goalkeepers in the conference in Adrian Fernandez. Fernandez is second in the Pac-12 in total saves (with 60) and save percentage (with .741). He is also fifth in goals against average, with 1.13.
Oregon State was close to claiming a share of the Pac-12 title this weekend. Down three points to Stanford in the standings, Oregon State just needed a win over 25th ranked Washington to tie up the conference.
Unfortunately, the Huskies brought their A-game, and shut out the Beavers to take a 2-0 victory. Hassani Dotson found some nice shots, and Adrian Fernandez made some great saves, but the Huskies controlled the tempo for much of the match, while the Beavers couldn’t capitalize on their opportunities.
The Beavers will take on an SMU team that just upset 7th ranked UCF to win the AAC Championship. SMU’s scoring is led by Midfielder Emil Cuello and Forward Akean Shackleford. Goalkeeper Grant Makela will be hard to score, with a 0.76 Goals Agaisnt Average.
It’s a tough squad, but the Beavers are up to the challenge. The action kicks off at Lorenz Field at 6:00 PM PT on Thursday, November 15.