The Hobart College soccer team opens 2015 with a non-league game under the lights at Utica College on Sept. 1. Statesmen Head Coach Shawn Griffin, in his 16th year at the helm, welcomes back 21 student-athletes from last year’s roster and adds nine newcomers to the squad.
After taking on the Pioneers on Tuesday at 7 p.m., Hobart will travel to take part in the 2015 Potsdam College Cup. The Statesmen will take on Plattsburgh on Saturday, Sept. 5 at 1:30 p.m. and Potsdam on Sunday, Sept. 6 at 1:30 p.m. in Canton, N.Y. The games have been moved to SUNY Canton due to Potsdam’s turf field not being finished.
“This year we are a little deeper from a position perspective and we had a very successful preseason as well. Our trip to Europe this summer provided a terrific opportunity for us to get a little head start on the season which will hopefully translate into a good start to the season this year,” said Griffin.
Hobart will look to its tri-captains, seniors Kyle Herod, Tyler Niles and Tyler Serafine for leadership this fall. Herod and Niles have battled injury during their soccer careers, but are ready to anchor the Statesmen defensive unit. This year Hobart is an older and more experienced team with 11 seniors on the roster. The Statesmen’s first-year group has also transitioned into the program nicely. They have a lot of talent and have acclimated to the culture of the program. “I’m excited to see the group develop this year and over the course of their four years. They all have the ability to make solid contributions to the program,” said Griffin.
Here’s a position-by-position look at the Statesmen:
Serafine is back in goal and ready to build on his experience from the end of last fall. An All-Liberty League second team selection, he started eight of the 12 games he played in, posting a 5-2-2 record. He recorded a 0.77 goals against average and an .881 save percentage. Sophomore Morgan Sawyer and first-year Alec Kaminer have also worked very hard in preseason and are read to back up Serafine.
Last fall the Statesmen posted 10 shutouts. This year nine of the 10 defenders listed on the roster are returners. Seniors Tyler Terens, Chris Walker-Jacks, Chris Poggi, Herod and Niles bring the leadership in back. Terens played in 18 games last fall also contributing offensively with three goals and two assists. Herod played in 12 logging four goals and an assist, while junior Josh Vendetta saw time in 14 games. Sophomore Joseph Escamilla had a solid rookie season starting 14 of the 18 games he played in. He added two assists. Junior Carl Weiss played in 19 games and chipped in an assist. First-year Alex Weisbein will bring even more depth in the back for Hobart.
In the middle, the Statesmen have five seniors Kyle Wiatrowski, TJ Kaszubski, DJ Clark, Jacob Fox and Zico Gaeffke. Wiatrowksi saw time in 14 games and notched one goal. Kaszubski battled an injury but was able to get in nine matches and Clark played in 18 games, posting three goals and an assist. A 2012 Liberty League Rookie of the Year and 2014 All-Liberty League first team selection, Fox was one of two players to start all 20 games last fall. He’ll play midfield and forward. Last season, he ranked second on the team with 13 points on five goals and three assists. Gaeffke played in all 20 games, starting 15 and notched two goals and three assists.
Sophomore Zach Poretz is looking to build on a successful rookie season where he recorded two goals and three assists in 19 games. Junior Joe Busuttil played in 14 games last fall, starting 10. He’s expected to make an impact on both ends of the field this year. Sophomore Adrian Colmenares played in 15 games as a first year and notched four goals, while junior Clint Dunn played in 12 and added a goal and an assist. First-years Mouhamed Diouf, Derrick Acheampong, Trevor Poisson, Tanner Poisson and Sam Farman have also joined the squad and displayed their talent and work ethic during the preseason.
Hobart brings back juniors JP White and Sean Barry as well as sophomores Patrick Schulz and Nick Dosky at forward and adds first-year Mitch Palmer. White played in all but one game last season and tallied three goals, while Barry saw time in 16 matches and scored twice. Schulz is also back after playing in 14 games last year. Dosky, who played in 16 games, starting in 11, contributed a goal and two assists last fall. He’s expected to play at forward and in the midfield this season.
After the Potsdam College Cup, Hobart will host St. John Fisher for its home opener on Cozzens Field on Tuesday, Sept. 8 at 4:30 p.m. The Statesmen’s schedule features two teams ranked in the NSCAA’s preseason poll, No. 20 Rochester on Sept. 12 and No. 13 St. Lawrence on Oct. 10. Both games are on Cozzens Field. Hobart opens Liberty League play at Union on Sept. 26 at 3 p.m.