LATHAM, N.Y. - Twelve men's soccer teams around the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) are gearing up for the start of the new season, with games beginning Friday. Penn State Abington enters the 2019 season as the team to beat as the Nittany Lions are coming off back-to-back conference crowns. Penn State Harrisburg will also return to the NEAC after spending the last six years as members of the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC). Following the conclusion of the regular season, the top six teams will advance to the NEAC Tournament where the conference champion will receive an automatic berth to the 2019 NCAA Division III Men's Soccer Tournament.
Head Coach: Ed Goodhines, 5th Season
2018-19 Record: 3-12 Overall, 2-8 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: N/A
Key Returners: David Andreasson; Kiernan Blouin
Players to Watch: Zach Schlachter, F; Laurent Gjonmarkaj, F
Key Losses: Tom Nicholls, Goalkeeper; Kyle Johnson, Defense
Coach's Season Outlook: Preseason has gone exceptionally well thus far and with the added depth from the incoming class the Wildcats look to improve and fight for a spot in the NEAC postseason.
Head Coach: Pedro Braz, 5th season
2018-19 Record: 6-11 Overall, 4-7 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: N/A
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Chad Johnson, So., Forward; Elan Markel, Sr., Defense; Sean O'Callaghan, Jr., Defense; Julian Cano, So., Defense/Midfield
Key Losses: Sean Huber, Forward; Connor Baer, Midfield/Forward
Coach's Season Outlook: Gallaudet posted the most wins since 2003 as the Bison won five or more games for the third straight season. GU won four conference games for a second consecutive year. The Bison offense will be led by All-NEAC second team forward Chad Johnson (14 goals, four assists). Gallaudet returns 85 percent of its goals scored last season. Goalie Shane Angel (112 saves) returns for his sophomore season. The Bison units are more experienced and deeper to provide a needed jolt during the games and season. "We have the most returning players (16) and we're deeper with 30 players on the roster," said Gallaudet coach Pedro Braz.
Head Coach: Steve Christenson, 4th season
2018-19 Record: 11-7-1 Overall, 8-3 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: Lost in NEAC Quarterfinals
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Samba Doukhansy; Abdikarim Maalo
Key Losses: Christian Cupello; Tom Reynolds; Noah Ogden
Coach's Season Outlook: The Wolves need to replace their entire back line, but Keuka has brought in a talented recruiting class with freshmen and transfers to fill gaps. The Wolves should be more athletic in 2019 with more speed and technical ability through the middle of the field. Keuka once again will test themselves with a difficult non-conference schedule featuring three teams from the Liberty League, two from the Empire 8, and one from the UAA in #4 ranked University of Rochester.
Head Coach: Tom Ardt, 9th season
2018-19 Record: 12-10-1 Overall, 9-2 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: Defeated Penn College, 4-1 in NEAC Semifinals, before falling to Penn St. Abington, 2-1 in the NEAC Final...Chargers lost to Grace (Ind.), 3-2 in the NCCAA Division I Midwest Region Final, but earned an at-large bit to the NCCAA Division I National Tournament for the first time in school history...Lancaster Bible lost to top-seeded Southwestern Christian (Okla.), 2-0, and sixth-seeded Judson (Ill.), 2-1 in pool play at the NCCAA Division I National Tournament.
Key Returners: Seniors - Dan Bewersdorff (M), Joel Hughes (M), Caleb Nelson (F); Juniors - Jake Deterline (GK), Rama Mugisha (F), Chad Tolson (F); Sophomores - Rusty Risteen (F), Nathan Muckle (D)
Players to Watch: Senior - Estiven Saldarriaga (M); Junior - Dylan Shertzer; Sophomore - Kedric Yoder (F)
Key Losses: Jared Jordan (M/D), Ivan Correa (M), Anthony Gehman (M/D)
Coach's Season Outlook: The Chargers lost just one starter from last season's team and have brought in a strong recruiting class. Lancaster Bible's roster of 37 players is the largest in program history, and the team should have depth at most positions. The Chargers will play a strong non-conference schedule, and will look to peak at the right time again.
Head Coach: Geoff Moore, 1st season
2018-19 Record: 9-8-2 Overall, 8-3 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: T, 1-1 w/Penn College in NEAC Quarterfinals, fell in PK shootout.
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Teo Chavez, Forward/Midfield; Kossi Nodjo, Forward; Jack Gardiner, Midfield; Daniel Sparkowski, Defense
Key Losses: Daniel Agboba, Defense; Cody Welkley, Goalkeeper
Coach's Season Outlook: With a new coach at the helm of the program, Morrisville men's soccer will look to utilize its non-conference schedule to prepare for conference play. The Mustangs have a large number of returners back to the squad in 2019, but with some key losses, will rely on new faces to help fill those roles lost to graduation.
Head Coach: Tyler Mensch, 5th season
2018-19 Record: 7-8-3 Overall, 6-4-1 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: NEAC Semifinal Appearance
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Chris McFarland, Colton Wartman, Kevin McFarland, Daniel Jackson, and Matthew Yoder, Gabe McKeon, Tanner Layne, Greg Dorsch, Dylan Snyder
Key Losses: GK- Hunter Gosnell, Vance Gradwell, Devan Leister
Coach's Season Outlook: We are hoping to have more depth at every position which will give us the opportunity to make another run at a NEAC playoff berth. We return a good mix of guys who played significant minutes along with bringing in some quality first year players which should help with depth and increasing our level of play. A tough non-conference schedule will mentally and physically prepare us for a rigorous NEAC slate of matches.
Penn State Abington
Head Coach: David Castellanos, 14th season
2018-19 Record: 14-6-1 Overall, 10-0-1 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: NEAC Champions, NCAA First Round
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Jose Palomeque, Hernando Villamil and Jake Kemery
Key Losses: Sean Seidenburg
Coach's Season Outlook: Each year our conference is getting stronger and stronger, with so much parity throughout all the teams. Every conference game is a tough battle, this year will be no exception.
Penn State Berks
Head Coach: Adrian Munteanu, 8th Season
2018-19 Record: 5-10-2 Overall, 3-7-1 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: N/A
Key Returners: Brenden Valverde (F), Jakob Fisher (D), Brennan Scheetz (D), Carter Lam (GK)
Players to Watch: Ash Deery (D), Ayden Lee (M), Tyler Dell (M), Luke Higgins (M)
Key Losses: Trent Johnson (GK), Tom Ulrich (D), Galen Raab (D)
Coach's Season Outlook: We are excited about the upcoming season. We have a good group of players returning and strong group of newcomers. Everyone came into camp in shape and they are all working well together. Our goal is to get back to the postseason and see what we can do if we make it.
Penn State Harrisburg
Head Coach: Dan Krzyzanowicz, 4th Season
2018-19 Record: 14-4-4 Overall, 1-3-3 CAC
2018-19 Postseason: 0-1 (ECAC Division III Championship Tournament)
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Joey Aman (Jr.), Nick Guglielmetti (Jr.), Toma Nichik (Jr.), Jared Brewer (Jr.), Shammah Gahomera (Jr.), Aaron Cummings (So.)
Key Losses: Ethan Hoover, Christian Schmoyer, Dustin Rohrbach, Eric Caldwell
Coach's Season Outlook: Penn State Harrisburg returns to the NEAC for the 2019 season after five years of competition in the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC). The Lions are led by 2018 CAC All-Conference Second-Team selection in junior forward Joey Aman; the team’s leading scorer a year ago. Also back is last season’s leader in assists in junior midfielder Shammah Gahomera, as well as junior goalkeeper Nick Guglielmetti, junior Toma Nichik, junior defender Jared Brewer and sophomore midfielder Aaron Cummings. The Blue & White will look to build on a campaign that included receiving votes in the D3soccer.com Top 25 poll and an ECAC Division III Championship Tournament berth last fall.
Head Coach: Joe Machado
2018-19 Record: 9-10-2 Overall, 6-4-1 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: NEAC Semifinalist
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Greg Diedhiou - NEAC Defensive Player of the Year, Mame Amar - 10 Goals & 4 Assists, Boubacar Doucoure - Four-year Captain, Mouhamed Diop, Emile Vwaza - 5 Goals & 3 Assists, Kalifa Konneh, Rashawn Best - Freshman GK.
Key Losses: Patrick McGovern, Khadim Diba, Aboubacar Konate
Coach's Season Outlook: Led by a senior-heavy core, SUNY Cobleskill is looking to improve on its NEAC Final Four performance from the 2018 season. The addition of an exciting freshman class led by goalkeeper Rashawn Best and defender Darwin Velasco will make an immediate impact and adds depth in key positions to the team.
Head Coach: Peterson Jerome, 16th season
2018-19 Record: 6-9-3 Overall, 5-6-0 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: N/A
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Jamar Gayle, Abdoulaye Toure, Nate Laughlin
Key Losses: JJ Besse
Coach's Season Outlook: We have a young and talented team. We are looking forward to see how the new group of freshmen develop throughout the season.
Head Coach: Jim McIntyre, 1st Season
2018-19 Record: 4-13-0 Overall, 3-8-0 NEAC
2018-19 Postseason: N/A
Key Returners/Players to Watch: Junger Vargas (2x All-NEAC), Christian Garavito (2x All-NEAC), Michael Bove, Justin Butler
Key Losses: Adam Whitaker, Pete Paluch, Curtis Davis
Coach's Season Outlook: Wells returns its two leading scorers from last season. Christian Garavito had 11 goals and 24 points and earned NEAC Third Team honors. Junger Vargas had five goals and a team-leading seven assists for 17 points. Vargas was named to the NEAC Second Team.
The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) has 12 NCAA Division III member institutions which include: Cazenovia College, Gallaudet University, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, Morrisville State, Penn College, Penn State Abington, Penn State Berks, Penn State Harrisburg, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Poly, and Wells College. Associate members are: Alfred State (M Lacrosse), Cedar Crest College (W Swimming), College of Saint Elizabeth (M Tennis & M Volleyball), D’Youville College (W Lacrosse), Hilbert College (M&W Lacrosse), Medaille College (M&W Lacrosse), Rutgers University – Camden (M Golf), SUNY Potsdam (M Volleyball) and Wilson College (M Volleyball). The NEAC has also partnered with the North Atlantic Conference in the sport of men’s tennis and women’s tennis. For more information, please visit: www.neacsports.com.