HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac University men's soccer team was tabbed sixth in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Preseason Coaches' Poll, announced by the league office on Monday, August 26, 2013. The Bobcats, who claimed their first regular-season title in program history last year, will look to make an impact in their inaugural season in the MAAC.
Monmouth, which will also be competing in its first season in the MAAC, received 111 points to edge Iona (110) for the top slot in the census. The Hawks were 11-4-4 last season and made a trip to the Northeast Conference Semifinals before being ousted by Fairleigh Dickinson. Under the direction of 10th year head coach Robert McCourt, the Hawks won seven regular season titles and four tournament crowns in the past decade.
In search for its fifth consecutive trip to the MAAC Championship tournament this season, Iona claimed second in the 11-team poll. Fairfield, with 97 points, was selected by the coaches to finish third, followed by Niagara (78), Siena (76), Quinnipiac (72), Canisius (48), Marist (46), Saint Peter's (33), Manhattan (30) and Rider (24).
MAAC Men's Soccer Preseason Poll
Junior goalkeeper Borja Angoitia (Bilbao, Spain) was the lone Bobcat to earn preseason honors. Angoitia's selection to the Preseason All-MAAC Team was his second accolade in 2013. He started in all 18 games last year, posting a 10-5-2 record and a total of five shutouts. He also finished with a microscopic 1.12 goals against average and a .788 save percentage.
Niagara defender Roberto Andersson garnered the most respect of any player to take the 2013 Preseason MAAC Player of the Year award. Andersson hails from Norrkoping, Sweden and will take the pitch for his third collegiate season. He started in all 19 games last year and was named to the All-MAAC Second Team at the end of the season.
Men's Soccer Preseason All-MAAC Team
|Alex De Carolis||Back||Canisius|
|Emmanuel Senyah Agyemang||Back||Monmouth|
|Carlos Suarez||Goalie||Saint Peter's|
2013 Preseason MAAC Player of the Year
Quinnipiac returns 15 players from its 2012 roster a year ago. The Bobcats posted an 8-1-1 in regular-season play to claim the title and hosting rights of the NEC Tournament. Quinnipiac graduated a good portion of its arsenal on the offensive end, but returns its entire line behind the ball. Senior captain Brandon Strain-Goode (Toronto, Ontario) leads the unit with the most experience under his belt. Strain-Goode has started in every game since joining the squad back in 2010, which included 18 last season.
Also joining the backline for a second year are sophomores Erik Panzer (Nelson, New Zealand) and Stevenson Hawkey (Pennington, N.J.). Panzer and Hawkey each played a significant role for Quinnipiac as freshmen in 2012. Panzer scored twice on the season, including the game-winner against Mount St. Mary's on Oct. 21 and then scored again on Oct. 28 at Robert Morris. Hawkey returns on defense for the Bobcats after starting in all 18 matches last season, finishing a one goal and an assist. Hawkey's season highlight came against LIU Brooklyn when his blast knotted the score up at two-apiece just before the final whistle to preserve the tie and escape with a point.
The Bobcats' attack returns three forwards and six midfielders from last year's squad. Juniors Machel Baker (Spanish Town, Jamaica), Ola Ogunjobi (London, England) led all returning forwards with two goals apiece. Baker netted goals last season against Mount St. Mary's (Oct. 21) and Saint Francis (Pa.) (Oct. 26). Ogunjobi netted a big goal for the Bobcats on Sept. 30 against St. Francis (N.Y.) by heading in the Bobcats' second goal in a 3-2 victory. Simon Hinde (Canberra, Australia) will anchor the midfield after finishing second on the team in 2012 with seven assists, which leads all returners. These three will look to help fill the void left by departed All-Conference performers Phillip Surprise (nine goals, two assists), William Daniels (six goals, one assist) and Robbie McLarney (four goals, seven assists).
Quinnipiac's quest for a second straight regular season conference title begins on Friday, Aug. 30 at Providence College. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. at Glay Field in Providence, R.I.
Student-Athletes, parents and fans can download the 2013-14 QU Athletics schedules to your laptop and mobile devices for free by clicking in the iCalendar link at the bottom of each sport's homepage or the master schedule page. Fans can also follow Quinnipiac Athletics on Facebook and Twitter (@QUAthletics) for all of the latest news and updates.
About the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference
The MAAC, headquartered in Edison, N.J., consists of 11 member institutions: Canisius College, Fairfield University, Iona College, Manhattan College, Marist College, Monmouth University, Niagara University, Quinnipiac University, Rider University, Saint Peter's University and Siena College. For more on the conference please visit, www.maacsports.com.