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Oct 30, 2012

Natl. championship contenders Maryland, UNC highlight ACC Men’s Soccer Tournament field

Entering the final day of regular season men’s soccer in the Atlantic Coast Conference, No. 1 Maryland, the top-ranked team in NCAA Division I for most of the season, and No. 3 North Carolina have already clinched the top two seeds for the upcoming ACC Tournament, while Boston College and No. 18 Wake Forest are tied for third place with 3-1-3 records and one conference match remaining.

Wake Forest will play the Terrapins at home in Winston-Salem, N.C. on Thursday night to close the regular season, while Boston College will travel to Chapel Hill, N.C. to face the Tar Heels, who, like Maryland, have already locked in their placement in the bracket. The Eagles defeated the Demon Deacons 1-0 on Oct. 6 and would claim the third seed if the teams finished with the same result Thursday night.

Clemson is sitting in fifth place going into the final night of the regular season with a 2-2-3 record and a home match against last-place 0-6-1 Virginia Tech on Thursday. The Tigers drew Boston College 0-0 and Wake Forest 1-1 during the season, leaving a chance for them to tie either the Eagles or Demon Deacons in points and climb as high as third in the standings.

Although all nine teams qualify for the ACC Tournament, the pecking order at the bottom half of the playoff field remains to be decided as well.

At 3-4-1, Duke’s 10 points are good for fifth in the ACC at the moment. But the Blue Devils are in a potential lame-duck situation, having already completed their conference schedule with Clemson sitting only one point behind them.

The rest of the field consists of 2-4-1 Virginia in seventh, with the Cavaliers owning the head-to-head tiebreaker over Duke. Virginia will play eighth-place NC State (1-6), a dangerous offensive team, on the road Thursday to close the regular season. The Wolfpack and the aforementioned Hokies are locked into the eighth and ninth seeds.

The ACC Tournament kicks off on Nov. 5 with first-round action at campus sites, starting with the play-in match between eighth-seeded NC State and ninth-seeded Virginia Tech. The winner visits regular-season champion Maryland in one of four quarterfinal-round games being played the next day at the home venues of the higher seeds.

The winners proceed to the ACC Men’s Soccer Championship, which takes place Nov. 9-11 at the Maryland SoccerPlex in Germantown, Md. Both semifinal matches take place Friday, Nov. 8 (kickoffs at 5: 30 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET) and the championship match kicks off Sunday, Nov. 11 at noon.

Tickets to the ACC Men’s Soccer Championship are on sale now at the SoccerPlex’s official website. Weekend passes granting admission to both semifinal games on Friday and Sunday’s final are available at adult ($17.50) and youth ($10.50) rates, each representing a substantial discount off the walk-up price. Individual tickets to Friday’s semifinal doubleheader are also on sale, as are single-game tickets to Sunday’s final.


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