SHU Men's Soccer Weekly Release
Courtesy: Seton Hall Athletic Communications
ECHEVERRY ERA BEGINS
Friday night's season opener against Saint Peter's University will mark the beginning of a new era for Seton Hall soccer under first-year head coach Gerson Echeverry. Echeverry was hired this winter after long-time head coach Manfred Schellscheidt announced his retirement after 24 years roaming the sidelines.
• Echeverry played at Seton hall from 1991-94, winning BIG EAST Tournament Most Outstanding Player honors in 1991.
• Echeverry was the top assistant coach at Seton Hall for five seasons (2003-07).
• Over the last three seasons Echeverry was an assistant coach for the USSF U17 men's national team.
SAINT PETER'S SERIES HISTORY
• Seton Hall leads the all-time series with Saint Peter's University 26-10-4.
• The Pirates have won their last four games against the Peacocks.
• Last season The Hall picked up a 3-1 victory over Saint Peter's at home behind a game-winner from Bolu Akinyode.
• The Pirates have not dropped a match to Saint Peter's since 2003, a 1-0 setback in Jersey City.
ARMY SERIES HISTORY
• Seton Hall trails in the all-time series with Army 1-23-2.
• Last season's 1-0 victory over Army was the first over the Black Knights in program history.
• The 2011 meeting between the two teams was the 26th in the series history but the first since 1984.
• Adriano Gabriele converted a penalty shot in the 33rd minute to lift SHU to the road victory.
COACHING STAFF ADDITIONS
New head coach Gerson Echeverry made two additions to his coaching staff for the 2012 season. Vincent Marcotrigiano will serve as the Pirates' full-time assistant coach will Guillermo Valencia has come on board to work with SHU's goalkeepers. Marcotrigiano played collegiately at George Mason University before enjoying a six-year professional career. Valencia has coached at the youth, club, collegiate and national level, and played professionally for 16 years.
MOVING ON UP
Junior forward Max Garcia led the Pirates in scoring last season with five goals and an assist for 11 points. While last year he generated all of his scoring playing out of the midfield, this season he has moved up to Seton Hall's front-row attack.
2012 TEAM CAPTAINS
Seton Hall features two captains for this year's team in junior forward Max Garcia and sophomore defender Mateusz Brela.
BONDER STARTS IN GOAL
Junior Kevin Bonder will start in net for Seton Hall's 2012 opener against Saint Peter's University. He saw action in four games last season, posting a 1.97 goals against average while making six saves.
BIG EAST PRESEASON POLL
Seton Hall was picked to finish in sixth place in the Blue Division in the 2012 BIG EAST Preseason Coaches' Poll. The Pirates went 5-11-2 overall last season and 1-8 in the BIG EAST. They picked up 27 points to finish sixth in the poll. SHU returns 20 letterwinners and six of its top seven scorers from a year ago.
KLJESTAN INTO HALL OF FAME
Former Seton Hall men's soccer standout Sacha Kljestan was inducted into the Seton Hall Athletics Hall of Fame in a ceremony held Monday, June 11, at the Fairmount Country Club in Chatham, N.J. Kljestan led the Pirates to three-straight NCAA Tournament berths from 2003-05. He was a two-time All-American and still holds the program's single-season assists record at 15.
CLASS OF 2016
Head coach Gerson Echeverry and the men's soccer program brought in six freshman this offseason to make up the Class of 2016. Joining the Pirates on the field this fall will be forward Danny Bartok (Union, N.J.), midfielder Lucas Della Ventura (Brookline, Mass.), midfielder Eric Lagg (Lafayette, N.J.), defender Pasquale Suriano (Lebanon, N.J.), defender Julian Kennedy (Nindorf, Germany) and defender Chris Hall (Bridgewater, N.J.).