Men's Soccer looking to returners to lead the way
New England College men’s soccer looks to continue their success in The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC) after finishing their 2008 season with an impressive 8-3-2 conference record. Overall the Pilgrims finished their 2008 campaign with a record of 10-6-3 and earned home field advantage in the TCCC Playoffs for the second time in three years.
The Pilgrims will have huge shoes to fill losing three players to graduation. They will have to continue their TCCC success without the scoring ability of Dean Smith. Smith picked up 2nd Team All-TCCC honors last season leading the team in almost every offensive statistic including total points with 19 and goals finishing with a team-high seven. Smith finished the season ranked seventh in the TCCC in points and ninth in the TCCC in goals. On the defensive side of the ball the Pilgrims will have to do without TCCC 2nd Team All-Conference defender Ian Coorssen and TCCC 2nd Team All-Conference goalie Jon Mayo.
Returning on offense for the Pilgrims will be senior Kagan Sinclair (Marblehead, Mass.) Sinclair finished third on the team in scoring last season with six goals. Juniors Keith Vosmus (Brunswick, Maine) and Jon Wentworth (N. Andover, Mass.) will also look to make an impact on the offensive side of the ball for the Pilgrims this season. Vosmus scored two goals and had an assist last season after joining the Pilgrims midway through the season.
At the midfield position the Pilgrims will look to veteran Peter Koskores (N. Andover, Mass.) to lead the way. Koskores anchored the Pilgrim midfield last season starting all 19 games and finished second on the team in scoring with 15 points including four goals and seven assists. Koskores picked up TCCC 1st Team All-Conference honors last season and was named the team captain.
On defense the Pilgrims return senior Scott Ryan (Pelham, N.H.) who played in 12 games last season and finished with a goal and an assist. In addition to his offensive contribution Ryan helped hold the Pilgrim opposition to under a goal per game and eight shutouts. In goal the Pilgrims will look to junior returner Pat Harkin (Scituate, R.I.) for leadership. Harkin played in five games last season finishing with a record of 2-1-1 and recorded four shutouts.
The Pilgrims have a handful of incoming first-year players who will see time at either the midfield or forward position including Aaron Kolb, PJ McLean and Taylor Federici. Head Coach Dave DeCew will look to first-year student-athlete Marc Preston to help out at the central defender position.
The Pilgrims were picked to finish seventh in this season’s TCCC Preseason Poll which is selected by the league’s head coaches. NEC opens their 2009 season on the road as they travel to take on in-state rival Keene State on Tuesday, Sept. 1 at 6:30 p.m. The Pilgrims open their home schedule on Thursday, Sept. 10 with a non-conference match-up against Rivier College at 4:00 p.m.