Aug. 24, 2000
College Park, Md. -
The Maryland men's soccer team's 2000 season will start with a tune-up of sorts this weekend. The Terps will hold the second annual Maryland/FILA Preseason College Kick-off on Aug. 25 and 26 at Ludwig Field to serve as the team's last exhibition contest before opening the season at the Virginia/Coca-cola Classic on Sept. 1. Georgetown, Virginia and St. John's will complete the four-team dress rehearsal, with the Cavaliers facing Georgetown on Aug. 25 at 5 p.m. St. John's and Maryland take the field for the second half of the doubleheader at 7:30 p.m. The Terps and Cavs will switch BIG EAST opponents for the second day of the tournament, with Virginia taking on the Red Storm at 5:30 and Maryland facing the Hoyas at 7:30 p.m.
Scouting the Maryland/FILA Preseason Kick-off
Three nationally ranked teams will hit Ludwig Field on Aug. 25 and 26 to participate in perhaps the most competitive preseason tournament in college soccer. ACC powers No. 16 Maryland and No. 10 Virginia square-off against BIG EAST members No. 15 St. John's and unranked Georgetown. Virginia starts the action with Georgetown on Aug. 25 at 5 p.m., with Maryland and St. John's to follow at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday, Aug. 26, the Cavs start the day against St. John's. That game begins at 5:00, with a Washington-area showdown between the Terps and Hoyas at 7:30 p.m. to wrap-up the weekend's action.
Eye On: The Georgetown Hoyas
Georgetown, who has fallen one win short of the BIG EAST championship for the past two years, should be strongest at the forward position in 2000. Juniors Kenny Owens and Nate Port are returning starters from last season. Owens, a Third Team All-South Atlantic Region selection for the last two years, was Georgetown's leading scorer with seven goals and 19 points.
The Hoyas also have a solid defensive core returning from last season, lead by tri-captain Jeff Boehling. A versatile player, he played every back position a year ago. The midfield will feature a number of veteran players, including four seniors. Kyle Rakow returns in the attacking midfield for the Hoyas after redshirting last season due to injury. Peter Bachman, another tri-captain for the Hoyas played in just seven games last season, but should expand his role this season. Brian O'Hagan, a sophomore from St. Louis, is the leading candidate to take over in goal for the graduated Tyler Purtill after a strong spring season.
Eye On: The St. John's Red Storm
Led by senior goalkeeper Jeffrey Stoklosa, senior defender Omar Chavez and junior midfielder Jeff Matteo, the Red Storm have veteran leadership and experience to help a large group of newcomers adapt. Stoklosa, who started seven games last season, will enter the season as the No. 1 keeper, with the departure of Dan Popik. Last year, Stoklosa, who will serve as a captain this season, posted a 0.82 goals against average, recording 19 saves. In 17 career games, including 12 starts, he has a 0.87 GAA. Playing in front of Stoklosa will be a defense led by Chavez, who will serve as the team's co-captain. Chavez started all 21 games last season and was a key member of a unit that allowed only 16 goals all season. The midfield should be led by Matteo, who finished third on the team in scoring last year with five goals and four assists for 14 points. Matteo has started 40 of 45 games in his first two seasons and is the most experienced returning player on the team.
Eye On: The Virginia Cavaliers
Virginia enters the 2000 season with a cast of veterans, and two Hermann trophy candidates. The Cavs finished the 1999 season with a 14-9-1 record, and a trip to the NCAA quarterfinals. Head coach George Gelnovatch returns 10 of 11 starters from the 1999 squad, including Kyle Martino and Ryan Trout, who join Maryland's Nick Downing on the final list of Hermann Trophy candidates. Trout and junior Sheldon Barnes return as the Cavaliers' top returning scorers, both netting nine goals during the 1999 season. Virginia's defensive unit revolves around the core of four returning players who combined for 88 starts last season. Two of those players, Mike Feller and Marshall Leonard, return after starting all 24 games. In goal, David Comfort and Kyle Singer split duties between the pipes last year, with both keepers excelling in the goalkeeper position. Both should compete for time again this season in goal.
Maryland Vs. the FILA Field
The Terrapins will face Georgetown and St. John's in this weekend's final preseason tune-up. St. John's eliminated Maryland last season with a goal in the 88th minutes of the first round NCAA match-up. Maryland has never beaten the Red Storm in regular season competition, and trails 0-2 in the series. On the flip-side, the Terrapins own an unblemished 22-0 record vs. the Hoyas, their Saturday opponent. The last time the two teams met during the regular season was in the first round of the NCAA tournament in 1994. Maryland won that game 4-3 at Georgetown.
A Quick look at The Terps
The Terps return a strong line-up despite the departure of All-Americans Taylor Twellman and Dan Califf to the professional ranks. Junior captains Nick Downing and Beckett Hollenbach join senior starter Mike Shebuski (Bloomington, Minn.) on defense for Maryland. Two-year starter senior Christian Lewis (Ellicott City, Md.) also returns in goal for the Terrapins after undergoing off-season back surgery. Senior and two-year starter Rob Birch (West Islip, N.Y.) will anchor the midfield with a host of underclassmen meshing together to provide the offensive firepower the Terps will need to climb in the standings. This season, the Terps' are looking for their seventh consecutive NCAA Tournament bid, and another run at the College Cup, which will be contested on Dec. 8 and 10 in Charlotte, N.C.
Seven Newcomers Joins Terps
The Maryland men's soccer family welcomed seven new members when they opened camp just over a week ago. Three freshman from just around the Beltway in Fairfax, Va., highlight a class full of future stars. Jason Arnold (Fairfax Station, Va.), Clarence Goodson (Springfield, Va.), and Abe Thompson (Fairfax Station, Va.) are all member of the Braddock Road Warhawks, which won the 1999 U-17 national club championship. Thompson is also a striker on the U.S. U-20 National team, and scored all four goals in the team's victory over the East Region team at the recent U.S Soccer festival. Fellow classmate Phillip Salyer (Dallas, Texas) is also a member of the U-20 team and should contest for a spot as a left back or a left side midfielder. New Jersey native Matt Roberts (Hillsborough, N.J.), attacking midfielder Bryan Vitagliano (Scottsdale, Ariz.), and midfielder Seth Stammler (Gahanna, Ohio) complete another strong recruiting class for the Terrapins entering the 2000 campaign.