Sept. 4, 2008
Providence, RI - The Brown men's soccer team will kick-off its season at home by hosting the adidas-Brown Soccer Classic presented by Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island, beginning on Friday, Sept. 5 and ending on Sunday, Sept. 7. Joining Brown will be Boston College, St. John's and Villanova.
The first game of the tournament, which features Boston College and Villanova, is scheduled to begin at 5:00 p.m. The Bears will take to the field at 7:30 p.m., as they challenge St. John's. Once again, the Department of Athletics will host the All-Campus BBQ and Fan Fest that will be held from 5:00-7:30 p.m. in front of the Pizzitola Sports Center! Great food and drinks, music, giveaways and vendors will be present, as Brown students with a valid student ID and a meal plan will eat and drink free. Dining halls are closed for dinner on Friday evening, so anyone not on a meal plan the cost is $12.
The second day of the tournament will be held on Sunday, Sept. 7, starting at noon when the Eagles take on St. John's. The next game will be Brown battling it out with Villanova beginning at 2:30 p.m. Tickets for the game are $5 for adults and $3 for children under the age of 12. Brown students with a valid student ID Are also admitted free of charge.
The Brown soccer squad is coming off a spectacular 2007 season, making its 23rd NCAA appearance and capturing its 19th Ivy League title. While Bruno has lost Ivy League Player of the Year defender Matt Britner '07.5, the team returns an experienced group of veterans and nine newcomers that are expected to make an immediate impact. Entering his 14th season as head coach, Mike Noonan (140-67-25) returns nine starters from last year's squad, including the Ivy League's Rookie of the Year, goalkeeper Paul Grandstrand (Orono, MN).
Scoring should not be a problem for the Bears, as the team will have a balanced offensive attack anchored by senior Dylan Sheehan (Wolfville, NS). Sheehan, a First Team All-Ivy selection, led the Bears with 26 points, which included 10 goals and six assists. Holding down the midfield will be the talented trio of First Team All-Ivy selections Nick Elenz-Martin (Encinitas, CA) and Darren Howerton (Northboro, MA), and Ivy League Honorable Mention selection Chris Roland (Rochester, NY).
Although Brown has lost one of its stalwart defenders in Britner, Bruno's backline will still be one of the toughest in the Ivy to crack. Back and better than ever are First Team All-Ivy defenders Rhett Bernstein (San Diego, CA) and co-captain Stephen Sawyer (Coppel, TX). Bernstein, a 2008 Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy Watch List selection, helped anchor a powerful defense that shut out seven teams and allowed just 16 goals last season.
The League's Rookie of the Year, Grandstrand, is back in net for Bruno, as is senior Jarrett Leech (Manakin-Sabot, VA). Grandstrand was unbeaten in Ivy League play while posting a 10-1-1 overall record. Leech is just as strong in the net, as he went 5-1-0 last year with two shutouts. He allowed just six goals for a 0.92 goals against average and picked up 26 saves.
Boston College men's soccer, the defending Atlantic Coast Conference regular-sea¬son and tournament champions, has recently been ranked fourth according to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Preseason Poll.
BC returns 15 letter winners and nine starters, including 2007 NSCAA first-team All-American Alejandro Bedoya. Bedoya, the ACC Offensive Player of the year who tallied eight goals and 10 assists (26 pts) last season, has also been named to the 48-member Missourti Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy Watch List. Midfielder Reuben Ayarna joined Bedoya on the All-ACC First Team (2g, 9a - 13 pts) and earning Second Team honors was Chris Brown and Sherron Manswell.
A season after finishing 9-7-5 (6-3-2 BIG EAST), the St. John's men's soccer team was picked to finish third in the 2008 BIG EAST preseason poll. Juniors Adam Himeno (3g, 1a), 2008 preseason All-BIG EAST selection Ryan Soroka, (2g, 3a) and Nelson Becerra (3g, 0a) are back to lead the offense.
An All-BIG EAST honorable mention a year ago, junior Joel Gustafsson (0g, 2a) leads a defense that allowed just 0.86 goals per game and posted nine shutouts in 2007. Redshirt senior Neal Kitson and redshirt junior Derby Carrillo, a transfer from Cal State Dominguez Hills, will battle for the starting spot in goal. Kitson was 4-4-2 with a 1.12 goals against average in 2007, while Carrillo ranked second in the country with a 0.53 GAA and fourth in country with a .867 save percent¬age.
New head coach Tom Carlin will count on a group of seasoned upperclassmen from a squad that finished 10-9 in 2007 to lead a talented crop of 11 newcomers. Captain Joe Taylor is a four-year starter in the midfield and finished second on the team in scoring last season. Junior Mike Seamon, who topped the `Cats with nine goals in 2007, will be a top offensive threat. Seniors Miles Harrison and Adam Brazitis help anchor a solid defensive group in front of the net. The biggest question looms in goal where three players without previous college experience are candidates to replace three-year starter Jason Friel, who graduated.