No. 3 Men's Soccer Opens the Season in California
Aug 29, 2013
WASHINGTON - The No. 3 Georgetown University men's soccer squad will open the 2013 season on Friday evening at the University of California-Berkeley in Berkeley, Calif. Georgetown will follow that up with a contest at Stanford University on Sunday in a pair of challenging matches. Both games will be broadcast live on the Pac-12 Network.
Georgetown edged Creighton in the BIG EAST Preseason Poll with 79 points and seven first-place votes, while the Bluejays had 75 points and three first-place votes. Creighton played in the 2012 College Cup falling to Indiana in the semifinal. Marquette and St. John's rounded out the top four, while Xavier took the fifth spot.
The forward was last year's team MVP and one of the four captains. He was named a Second Team All-American by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America as well as receiving a nod to the College Soccer News' First Team and TopDrawerSoccer.com's Team of the Year. Neumann was also an NSCAA First Team All-Northeast Region honoree. He was named All-BIG EAST First Team for the second-consecutive year.
Neumann was second on the team in scoring with 10 goals and 13 assists for 33 points. Neumann's 13 assists ranked him first in the BIG EAST Conference and second in the nation in helpers. This past season, the forward was the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week, TopDrawerSoccer.com Forward of the Week and earned a spot on the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll. He was also a MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist.
Already this season, Neumann has been named one of the three team captains for the Blue & Gray and CollegeSoccerNews.com Preseason All-American.
Sophomore Brandon Allen (Old Bridge, N.J./St. Joseph) was also a unanimous selection for the Blue & Gray.
Last year, Allen was named the TopDrawerSoccer.com Freshman of the Year, SoccerAmerica Freshman of the Year and earned a spot on the all-rookie team. Additionally, he was an NSCAA Second Team All-Northeast Region honoree. He received recognition on the BIG EAST Second Team and the All-Rookie Team, after the forward led the Hoyas with 16 goals and two assists for 34 points as well as an impressive 10 game-winning goals to lead the country and rank sixth in the nation in goals. Allen was named BIG EAST Rookie of the Week on three occasions and was also named CollegeSoccerNews.com Player of the Week after an outstanding performance.
Allen has spent time with the U-18 Men's National Team and was on the U.S. CONCACAF U-20 Championship roster. Already he was named CollegeSoccerNews.com Preseason All-American.
Last season, Georgetown made history with its first-ever trip to the College Cup and a national championship game appearance. GU finished the season with a record of 19-4-3 and a mark of 6-2-0 in the BIG EAST Conference. The squad was the third overall seed in the NCAA Tournament and the 19 wins were the most in program history. The Hoyas were the BIG EAST Blue Division Champions, the BIG EAST Championship runners-up and advanced to the national championship game in PKs in a thrilling game against the University of Maryland.
Cal is coming off of an 8-7-3 record (3-5-2 in the Pac-12 Conference) in 2012. A 2011 All-Pac-12 first-team defender, Steve Birnbaum played just once last year due to injury, but he is healthy and back for the Bears as a fifth-year senior.
The Bears' co-captains for 2013 are Birnbaum, senior midfielder Alec Sundly and junior midfielder Seth Casiple. Casiple is Cal's top returning scorer, with 11 points and was the 2011 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year in 2011. Casiple also led Cal in 2012 with seven assists. Junior forward Stefano Bonomo tied for the team high in goals (5) as a sophomore and goalkeeper Kevin Peach, who started all 18 games as a sophomore last year, compiled a 1.40 goals-against average in 2012.
Georgetown and Cal have met just once before. The Bears won that meeting, 2-0, in Washington, D.C., in 2009.
The Cardinal returns seven starters from a unit that went 9-8-1 overall and finished third on the Pac-12 table with a 5-4-1 record in 2012. Heading up the returners will be All-Pac-12 honorable mention senior midfielder JJ Koval, who assumes the captain's armband for Stanford, senior goalie Drew Hutchins and reigning Pac-12 Freshman of the Year Aaron Kovar in the midfield.
All-Pac-12 honorable mention forward Zach Batteer, the team's top returning scorer with six goals in 2012, also returns to help form the core of the Cardinal returners.
Hutchins anchors the Cardinal defense as its No. 1 goalkeeper for the second straight season, and will marshal a back line that returns three starters in senior Tyler Conklin, junior Jimmy Callinan and sophomore Brandon Vincent. Hutchins recorded five shutouts a season ago, his first between the posts full-time, while as a whole the Cardinal kept six clean sheets in 2012.
Georgetown is 1-0 all-time against Stanford with the lone meeting coming in 2011 when GU won 1-0 in double overtime at home. The staff is no stranger to the Cardinal as Hoya Head Coach Brian Wiese spent five seasons there and earned a master's of science degree in product design (mechanical engineering) in 1998.
Friday's match will be available online. The stream is available to certain cable providers. Sunday's game will be broadcast on the national network. Fans should check their local channel lineup and listings as well as pac-12.com/live for more information.
Friday's game will kick off at 5 p.m. ET and Sunday will begin at 7 p.m. ET.