MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The state of West Virginia will be at the center of the college soccer universe Wednesday night.
Head coach Dan Stratford and the unbeaten Mountaineers will take on the perfect 11-0 and top-ranked Marshall Thundering Herd in Morgantown. The two teams are meeting for the fifth season in a row, and the second straight year as Sun Belt foes.
WVU men’s soccer vs. Marshall game information
- Date: Oct. 18, 2023
- Time: 7:00 p.m. ET
- Location: Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium in Morgantown, West Virginia
- TV/Stream: ESPN+
- Radio: U92 The Moose
- No. 5 WVU record: 9-0-4, 2-0-3 Sun Belt
- No. 1 Marshall record: 12-0, 5-0 Sun Belt
- Series history: WVU is 16-7-2 against Marshall since their first meeting in 1983.
WVU men’s soccer vs. Marshall matchup preview
The histories of WVU head coach Dan Stratford and Marshall head coach Chris Grassie are intertwined, and Wednesday’s match will be the fourth chapter in their saga. Both teams are 1-1-1 in the previous three matchups.
The two coaches won three conference championships and reached two DII national championship games together at the University of Charleston from 2014-16 with Grassi as head coach and Stratford an assistant.
“We’re great friends,” Stratford said in September. “We worked together for a long time. We have a history together and a shared affinity [for] the University of Charleston, which is, again, another West Virginia school and a powerhouse in Division II. So yeah, it’s kind of cool when you look in that moment.”
In 2017, Grassie left Charleston to take the post of head coach at Marshall. While Stratford went on to win two DII national championships in three years as the head coach at Charleston, Grassie won a College Cup National Championship with the Thundering Herd in 2021.
Though both teams have a win over the other in the Grassie-Stratford era, WVU has not secured a win against Marshall since 2020 when it won 1-0 in the shortened spring season.
WVU sophomore forward Marcus Caldeira is tied for seventh in the nation in goals (nine), while his attack mate Yutaro Tsukada is tied for fourth in the country in assists (eight).
WVU’s 13-game stretch of unbeaten play is also the longest single-season undefeated streak in program history.
Marshall enters Wednesday’s match with a perfect 11-0 record and the largest goal differential (28) in the country. The Thundering Herd are also No. 2 in the country in points per game (8.73) and scoring offense (2.91 goals per game).