Paul Zazenski

JMU head coach Paul Zazenski congratulates the team after their CAA title victory on Sunday afternoon.

After being crowned 2018 CAA men’s soccer champions, JMU learned its NCAA tournament path Monday afternoon. The Dukes will travel to High Point, North Carolina, to face the High Point Panthers in the first round. The match will take place Thursday and the kick-off time is to be announced.

High Point, which is 13-2-2 (7-0-1 Big South), made the tournament with an at-large bid. Before its early exit from the Big South Conference Tournament, it was the No. 20 team in the nation. This will be the first time JMU and High Point have ever met.

The Panthers have met some of the teams JMU faced this season. High Point fell to Elon 2-1 but defeated Gardner-Webb 1-0, Longwood 2-1 and Radford 2-1. Its most impressive win was against No. 5 Duke 1-0.

JMU is riding high with momentum after its CAA tournament win. Although it took 110 minutes and a penalty shootout, the Dukes lifted the conference trophy for the first time since 2014. Junior midfielder Manuel Ferriol was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player and redshirt sophomore goalkeeper TJ Bush, senior defender Thomas Shores and graduate student midfielder Yannick Franz were also named to the all-tournament team.

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