WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – The Salem soccer team will make its seventh appearance in a conference semifinal in program history on Friday, Nov. 8, when the Spirits clash with host and No. 1 West Division seed Maryville at 7 p.m. in the USA South Conference semifinals. The match will mark the second semifinal for the Spirits, and first since 2016, as a USA South affiliated program.
Salem (12-5-1), who earned its bid to the league semifinals with a 2-0 victory over Piedmont on Nov. 2, advanced to the Great South Athletic Conference semifinal round in 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. In four of those seasons (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015) the Spirits reached the title match.
The Spirits are riding a six-match winning streak into the weekend, which dates back to a 3-1 victory at N.C. Wesleyan on Oct. 12. A triumph over the Scots would tie for the eighth-longest winning stretch in program history, since becoming an NCAA program in 2008. The last time Salem posted seven wins was between Sept. 19 and Oct. 7, 2014.
Longest Salem Unbeaten Streaks Since 2008
|17||Sept. 24, 2015-Sept. 16, 2016 (includes one tie)|
|16||Oct. 1, 2012-Sept. 14, 2013 (includes three ties)|
|13||Sept. 24-Nov. 4, 2016|
|10||Oct. 4-Nov. 10, 2013|
|10||Oct. 4-Nov 3, 2012|
|8||Sept. 23-Oct. 17, 2017|
|8||Oct. 9-Oct. 29, 2010|
|7||Sept. 19-Oct. 7, 2014|
Salem is led offensively by the trio of Ellie Montes (17 points), Courtney Chaplin (12) and Baylee Greenwood (11). Montes has notched a team-best five goals, while Chaplin is second on the unit with five goals. Greenwood and Amy Bounds have accounted for the third-most goals on the team with four apiece.
Salem has scored 39 goals and had 26 assists in 18 matches this season. The Spirits have attempted 325 shots (175 shots on goal) along the way to a .538 shots on goal percentage in 2019. Defensively, the Spirits limited opponents to 26 goals and 19 assists on 189 shots (102 shots on goal).
Senior goalkeeper Hannah Wagner, who is 8-3-1 on the season, anchors the Spirits' defensive with 58 saves (.853 save percentage) in 1059:41 minutes. She has been part of six shutouts for Salem over the course of the slate, including five against USA South Conference programs (Brevard, Meredith, Averett, Methodist, Piedmont).
Maryville (13-4) brings a nine-match winning streak into Friday's clash with the Spirits, which began with a 7-0 victory over Wesleyan (Ga.) on Sept. 28. While the Scots own a 4-3 edge in the all-time series versus Salem, the Spirits have won the last three straight, including a 2-0 win in the USA South quarterfinals in 2016.
All-Time Series Breakdown (Salem vs. Maryville)
|2009||Maryville, W, 3-0|
|2009||Maryville, W, 3-0|
|2010||Maryville, W, 1-0|
|2011||Maryville, W, 1-0|
|2016||Salem, W, 2-1|
|2016||Salem, W, 2-0|
|2016||Salem, W, 2-0 (USA South Quarterfinals)|
The Scots are 7-2 at home in 2019, with the only setbacks coming against non-conference opponents Roanoke (Sept. 8) and Emory (Sept. 21). Senior Shannon Reagan, with 20 goals and 13 assists (50 points) to her credit, and sophomore Taylor Frizen, who has accounted for 13 goals and seven assists (33 points), lead the way for the Maryville offense. Collectively, the Scots have combined for 69 goals and 50 assists while taking 394 shots (202 shots on goal) on the season.
Abbey Coleman, who has surrendered just 10 goals in 16 matches, has been the key cog in the Maryville defense as the goalkeeper. Coleman, who has logged 1202:58 minutes in net, is responsible for 45 saves (.818 save percentage) and a 12-4-0 mark this season. She has been a part of 11 shutouts, including nine against USA South opposition.
CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH ON SATURDAY
A win by the Spirits on Friday evening would mark the fifth conference title match in program history and second as a USA South member program. The other four occasions that Salem reached a conference title was in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, while it was a member of the Great South Athletic Conference. The Spirits capped off two of those appearances in the Great South Athletic Conference championship by winning the title and advancing to the NCAA Division III Tournament in 2013 and 2014.
A victory over Maryville on Saturday would secure the second appearance in a USA South Conference title match for the Spirits and first since 2016. Salem would play the winner of Friday's 4 p.m. bout between No. 1 Greensboro (East Division) and No. 2 Covenant (West Division) on Saturday, Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. in Maryville.
For more information on Salem soccer check out www.salemspirits.com.