By JOHN BOSCHINI
It’s a weekend on the road for many of the nation’s top teams as college soccer enters its penultimate weekend before conference tournaments begin.
The game of the week kicks off tonight as No. 3 Maryland travels to No. 11 Virginia in an explosive ACC matchup. Maryland is looking to secure the second seed in the upcoming ACC tournament against the defending national champions. The Terps are riding a seven-game winning streak, averaging three goals a game during that span. The Cavaliers are looking to rebound after dropping out of the top 10 for the first time this season.
On Saturday, five of the top nine schools are on the road against unranked opposition. On the west coast, No. 7 UC-Irvine face a tough visit from No. 19 UC-Santa Barbara. The Gauchos are 3-1 against ranked opponents this season but are coming off a nationally-televised loss to Cal Poly on Wednesday. UC-Irvine is undefeated since Sept. 19 thanks in large part to Amani Walker, who has racked up 22 points this season.
Ivy League supremacy in on the line when No. 13 Brown travels to take on No. 14 Pennsylvania. The Quakers boast a perfect 4-0-0 record in conference play but are coming off a disappointing midweek loss to Penn State, ending a shutout streak that lasted nearly 550 minutes. The Bears will rely on standout keeper Paul Grandstrand, who has 11 shutouts this season.
Here is a rundown of this weekend's top college matches:
St. Francis (PA) at No. 12 Monmouth, 3:00
Oregon State at No. 10 California, 5:00
No. 3 Maryland at No. 11 Virginia, 7:00
Saint Joseph’s at No. 16 Charlotte, 7:00
Evansville at Eastern Illinois, kicking off at 8:00, Fox Soccer Channel
No. 23 Michigan State at Michigan, 1:00
No. 1 Akron at Cleveland State, 2:00
No. 8 Butler at Detroit, 2:00
No. 4 North Carolina at East Tennessee State, 6:00
No. 22 Tulsa at Florida International, 7:00
No. 17 William & Mary at Hofstra, 7:00
No. 18 Boston College at Wake Forest, 7:00
No. 20 Princeton at Cornell, 7:00
No. 2 Louisville at Villanova, 7:00
No. 24 South Florida at St. John’s, 7:30
No. 13 Brown at No. 14 Pennsylvania, 7:30
No. 9 Creighton at SIU-Edwardsville, 7:30
Kentucky at No. 5 Southern Methodist, 8:00
No. 19 UC-Santa Barbara at No. 7 UC-Irvine, 11:00
No. 6 Connecticut at Pittsburgh, 1:00
Temple at No. 16 Charlotte, 1:00
Robert Morris at No. 12 Monmouth, 1:30
Washington at No. 10 California, 5:00
Northwestern at No. 25 Indiana, 5:00
Santa Clara at No. 21 Loyola Marymount, 5:30
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