August 9, 2007

Men's Soccer Squad Set for 2007 Season

Aug. 9, 2007

Having made its 22nd NCAA tournament appearance last season, the Brown men's soccer squad is prepping for still another outstanding season. The 2007 edition of the team features an experienced and talented roster. In spite of the departure of First Team All-Ivy selection and Bruno's leading scorer, Andrew Daniels '07, and Second Team All-Ivy honorees Ben Brackett '07 and Brian Joyce '07, the Bears will still be one of the top teams competing for the conference title. Entering his 13th season as head coach, Mike Noonan (125-65-24), returns seven starters from last year's squad, which finished the 2006 campaign 11-5-3 and reached the second round of the NCAA Championships.

The Bears will return 19 players from last year, and are confident that the seven newcomers joining them will be serious contributors on the field this season. The returnees also feature five seniors who possess substantial experience and solid leadership qualities that will guide the team to a very successful campaign.

Offense:

The Bears will have a balanced scoring attack, anchored by several team veterans. Seeing action in 17 games and receiving 14 starts last season, Kevin Davies '08, is one of Brown's highly regarded forwards. He combined for one goal and four assists in 2006. Joining him will be Dylan Sheehan '09, who was a spark off the bench last season seeing action in all 19 games. He tallied four goals and two assists for 10 points and earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors on Oct. 9 after scoring two goals, which led to victories over Boston College and Princeton University. Rounding out the front line is T.J. Thompson '09, Iain Elderidge '09 and newcomer Jon Okafor '11.

Midfield:

Nick Elenz-Martin '10 saw action in 18 games and earned 17 starts last season as he tallied four goals, one assist and nine points. Elenz-Martin earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors on Sept. 18 after scoring the game-winning goal against then undefeated Boston University. He also picked up a goal during the first-round of the NCAA tournament in Brown's 4-1 dusting of Adelphi.

Joining Elenz-Martin will be Darren Howerton '09, who played an integral role on Brown's squad last year. Howerton, one of the best set-up men in the league, started 15 games and posted five assists (seventh in the Ivy League). Chris Roland '10, who picked up two goals and three assists during his freshman season, will also add strength to the middle ranks, as he saw action in all 19 games. Adding depth and versatility to the midfield will be Jon Behrendt '08 and Dean Melitsanopoulos '09. Newcomers Andy D'Avanzo '11 and Sean McGrath `11 are also expected to make an immediate impact on the field, along with junior transfer from Columbia, Will Lee '09. As a midfielder, Lee saw action in 12 games last season with the Lions, including nine starts. He tallied one game-winning goal in Columbia's 1-0 victory over Hofstra.

Defense:

Unanimous first team All-Ivy selection, Rhett Bernstein '09 will return to help lead the Bears both offensively and defensively this season. Bruno's second-leading scorer with eight goals and 16 points, he ranked fourth in the League in goals and sixth in points. One of Brown's most consistent players, Bernstein started all 19 games last season and will be relied on heavily again this year.

Although injured last year after seeing action in just two games, Matt Britner '08 rejoins his teammates in 2007. Britner, a First Team All-Ivy selection in 2005, showed great promise during his freshman campaign earning first team All-Ivy honors. A team captain this year, Britner will add strength and quickness to the back line.

Laurent Manual '08 and co-captain Stephen Sawyer '09 will complete the strong backfield. Both are consistent forces on the defensive end and helped Brown hold teams to one goal or less in 14 of their 19 games last season. Adding depth to the defense will be Jeff Hay '10, Skyler Patrick '10 and Thomas Thunell '10. Rounding out the defense are newcomers David Walls '11 and Isaac Jabola-Carolus '11.

Goalkeeping:

Jarrett Leech '09, who ranked in the top of the conference in nearly every statistical category last year, will look to do the same this year. He ranked first in saves with 76, and had a 1.32 goals-against average. He played in 16 games while starting 15, and finished the season with an 8-4-3 record, which included three shutouts.

Jarrod Schlenker '10 will also be vying for some time in the net, as he finished the season 3-1-0 after playing in nine games and starting four. His goals-against average was 1.69, and he tallied 17 saves. Freshman Paul Grandstand will also see some time at goal, as he helped his Breck School team to a Class A State Championship in 2006.