Bulldogs Visit IUPUI, Louisville

Jeff Adkins (Photo by Brent Smith)

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ROAD STRETCH:  Coming off a successful season-opener at home, Butler hits the road for back-to-back contests, beginning with a short trip across town.  The Bulldogs will kickoff their September slate with a visit to downtown Indianapolis for a non-conference match against IUPUI on Tuesday, Sept. 3.  The contest at IUPUI's Michael A. Carroll Stadium is scheduled to start at 7 p.m., and will be televised locally on Hometown Sports & News (HTSN).  Butler and IUPUI, separated by just five miles, will be meeting for the 13th time, and the Bulldogs lead the all-time series, 8-2-2.  Butler captured last year's meeting at the Butler Bowl, 2-0, behind goals from Brandon Fricke and Tyler Pollock (since graduated).  IUPUI opened the 2013 season with a 0-0 tie at Detroit.  The Bulldogs will finish the week on the road with a match at #7 Louisville on Saturday, Sept. 7.  The Cardinals knocked off #20 Virigina, 2-1, on the road in their season-opener.                    

The Bulldogs will play four of their next five contests on the road.
      
STRONG START:  Butler struck twice in a three-minute span midway through the first half and then held off a strong second half challenge to post a 2-1 victory over Western Michigan in the season-opener for both teams on Friday (Aug. 30).  Sophomore Jeff Adkins gave the Bulldogs the lead just over 21 minutes into the match, and Butler stretched that margin to 2-0 just over three minutes later on a penalty kick by sophomore Zach Steinberger.  Western Michigan picked up the pace in the final 45 minutes and trimmed the lead in half when Connor Furgason knocked in a loose ball off a corner kick.  The Broncos out-shot Butler, 7-2, in the final 45 minutes and had a 4-1 advantage in shots on goal.  

IGNITION SWITCH:  For the second consecutive year, forward Jeff Adkins tallied Butler's first goal of the season.  And he did it in impressive fashion.  The Butler sophomore took a pass from teammate Zach Steinberger in the middle of the field and launched a shot from 40 yards out.  It eluded Western Michigan goalkeeper Chase Rau and settled into the left side of the net.  Adkins scored his first collegiate goal and Butler's first 2012 goal in his second match a year ago, and he went on to lead the Bulldogs in scoring with five goals and five assists.  He also scored Butler's first goal during this year's exhibition season, finding the back of the net just five-and-a-half minutes into Butler's victory over Eastern Illinois.                     

SAVE MORE:  Senior goalkeeper Jon Dawson picked up where he left off a year ago, recording seven saves in Butler's opening-match victory over Western Michigan.  Dawson had three saves to help Butler blank the Broncos in the first half, and then he added four more saves in the final period.  The seven saves matched the second-highest single match total of his career.  A year ago, Dawson posted 87 saves, matching the third-highest single season total in Butler men's soccer history.    

BULLDOG BITS:  Sophomore Zach Steinberger, who scored Butler's game-winner against Western Michigan, was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll.  He's the first Butler men's soccer player to be honored by the BIG EAST...Senior goalkeeper Jon Dawson boosted his career total for saves to 150.  He trails Fabian Knopfler (2007-10) in seventh place on Butler's all-time saves list by just three stops.