GREENSBORO, N.C. (TheACC.com) – The spring portion of the ACC season concludes Saturday with the conference’s NCAA automatic qualifier match, featuring No. 1 Pitt playing at No. 4 Clemson at 7 p.m. at Historic Riggs Field in Clemson, South Carolina. ACC Network will have the television broadcast.
Pitt won the Coastal Division crown, while Clemson captured the Atlantic Division title as well as the 2020 ACC Championship in the fall. The Tigers earned home-field advantage for the automatic qualifier by virtue of their win in the ACC Championship game. The winner of the Saturday match earns the league’s automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.
The selection show for the 36-team tournament is at Noon Monday on NCAA.com, with the NCAA Tournament beginning April 29 at sites across the state of North Carolina and culminating with the NCAA College Cup on May 14 and 17 in Cary, North Carolina.
Noting ACC Men's Soccer
• ACC teams hold five spots in the United Soccer Coaches national rankings this week: Pitt (1), Clemson (4), Wake Forest (5), North Carolina (15) and Virginia Tech (25).
• PItt (7), Clemson (12) and Wake Forest (18) are ranked in the top 20 of the latest NCAA RPI.
• Pitt is ranked No. 1 nationally for the seventh week. The Panthers earned their first-ever No. 1 national ranking earlier this season. Prior to this season, Pitt's highest ranking was No. 7 on Oct. 9, 2000.
• In spring ACC games, Pitt led the league in scoring with 14 goals. Clemson held teams to five goals, tied for the second fewest in the ACC.
• Clemson (98) and Pitt (73) took the most shots of all ACC teams in conference play in the spring.
• Clemson earned its 15th ACC Championship in November, including its fourth tournament title and first since 2014.
• Clemson’s Kimarni Smith and Pitt's Valentin Noel each tied the ACC Championship's record for goals in a tournament with four. Clemson’s Grayson Barber matched the championship’s assist record (4).
• Smith scored a hat trick in the tournament against Virginia Tech, just the second in ACC Championship history (Ihor Dotsenko, Wake Forest vs NC State in 1997 first round).
• Pitt's Valentin Noel leads the ACC and ranks third nationally in goals (11). Pitt's Jasper Löeffelsend and Clemson's Grayson Barber are tied for fifth nationally with seven assists.
• ACC teams have captured 17 NCAA men’s soccer titles, including seven of the last 15. The ACC's streak of 17 straight years with at least one team in the NCAA Men’s College Cup was snapped in 2018.
• 25 ACC players were selected in the 2021 MLS SuperDraft, including 12 in the first round. Both totals broke the ACC's own records for a conference. The ACC had each of the top five picks.