• Coming off a pair of hard-fought overtime contests in last week's Hotels at Grand Prairie Classic in Peoria, Ill., the UMass men's soccer team heads north to participate in the Windjammer Classic, hosted by Vermont. The Minutemen will face New Hampshire on Friday at 1:30 p.m. and Vermont on Sunday at 1:30 p.m.
• Both games will have free live streaming video. The UNH game is not scheduled to have announcers but the Vermont game will have a play-by-play announcer. Live stats will not be available.
• The Minutemen return 13 letter winners and six starters, including leading scorer Josh Schwartz. The junior forward led the Minutemen in points (12), goals (5), assists (2) and game-winning goals (2) in addition to being named Academic All-District. Second-leading scorer Matt Keys (3 goals, 1 GWG) will anchor a defense that lost half of its back four to graduation and all of the team's minutes in goal. Redshirt freshman Nick Ruiz is expected to get the start on Friday.
Recapping Last Week's 0-1-1 Ledger
• UMass played Evansville to a scoreless draw last Friday before faling to (rv) Bradley 1-0 on a goal nearly five minutes into overtime.
• Redshirt freshman GK Nick Ruiz and junior D Matt Keys were named to the Hotels at Grand Prairie Classic All-Tournament team.
Ruiz Named Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week
• Nick Ruiz was named A-10 Rookie of the Week after posting a 0.44 goals-against average as he made 16 saves, including a career-high nine in a 0-0 tie against Evansville. He also made six saves in 95 minutes of a 1-0 overtime loss at Bradley, who was (and still is) receiving votes in the NSCAA top 25. Both Evansville and Bradley received multiple first place votes in the Missouri Valley Conference preseason poll.
• He is the first Minutemen player to earn a weekly award since Connor Devivo took home Rookie of the Week honors on Oct. 25, 2010.
Ruiz Leads The Nation In Saves Per Game
• According to TopDrawerSoccer, GK Nick Ruiz leads the nation with 8.0 saves per game. He stopped a career-high nine shots in a double-OT 0-0 tie with Evansville and six in a 1-0 OT setback at Bradley.
Injuries Force UMass Youth Into Service
• UMass entered the 2013 season with a fair amount of experience from the 2012 squad, but saw three players go down with injuries in the first few weeks of preseason camp, forcing the coaching staff to take a hard look at some of the ten first-year position players on the roster.
• As a result, UMass started eight freshmen or sophomores and played 16 of 19 available position players in both games last weekend. The back row saw a pair of freshman defenders and Ruiz in goal for both games.
Ruiz, Keys Never Left The Field
• One of the most experienced Minutemen is junior Matt Keys, who played all 205 minutes last weekend in one of the two center back spots.
• Redshirt freshman GK Nick Ruiz also logged all 204:44 on the field, making 16 saves.
Schwartz Named Preseason All-Atlantic 10
• Junior F Josh Schwartz was among 27 players named to the preseason Atlantic 10 All-Conference team by College Sports Madness. Schwartz was listed among the four second team forwards and the only UMass player.
• The Annapolis, Md. native led the Minutemen with five goals, two assists and three game-winners a year ago. He was also named to the College Sports Information Directors of America Academic All-District team.