Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Warriors’ finish 20th in final national rankings

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. – After winning a MAC Commonwealth title and reaching the second round of the NCAA Championship for the second time in three years, the Lycoming College men’s soccer team finished 20th in the United Soccer Coaches final Division III poll, the organization announced on Tuesday, Dec. 5.

The ranking in the final national poll is the second in program history after the 2015 team finished 10th.

The Warriors (19-3 overall) won a program record 19 games, while also rising to new heights in the national polls. In the United Soccer Coaches poll, the Warriors rose to as high as fourth and in the D3soccer.com poll, they ranked third. The squad also ranked first in the Mid-Atlantic Regional rankings for parts of the season as it defeated a program-record three nationally-ranked opponents, including third-ranked Messiah, the eventual national champion, in the MAC Commonwealth Championship, a 2-1 Lycoming win.

The Warriors hosted a Division III regional for the second time in three years as it defeated Lehman, 2-0 in the opening round before falling to 10th-ranked Drew University, 1-0 in the second round.

Messiah topped the final poll after defeating North Park, 2-1, in the national championship. The Falcons last and only second loss of the season came in the MAC Commonwealth Championship to the Warriors. North Park finished second in the poll while the University of Chicago, Brandeis and Tufts rounded out the top-five. Drew finished 12th in the poll.

The Warriors were led by school-records of six All-MAC Commonwealth and four All-Mid-Atlantic region selections, in addition to an All-American. Junior defender Sainclair Tueno (Silver Spring, Md./Montgomery Blair) led the team with 11 goals scored, as he earned All-MAC Commonwealth and All-Mid-Atlantic region honors while also being named to the United Soccer Coaches All-American Second Team. He also earned MAC Commonwealth Championship MVP honors when he scored two goals in two conference playoff games.

Seniors Jordan Logan (Oxford, Pa./Oxford Area), Abdullahi Abdi (Seattle, Wash./James Garfield) and Kyle Thomas (Bel Air, Md./C. Milton Wright) each earned All-MAC Commonwealth First Team honors while Logan was named to the All-Mid-Atlantic second team,  Abdi was named to the first team and Thomas was named to the third team. Senior Kyle Stettenbauer (Columbia, Pa./Hempfield) earned All-MAC Commonwealth Honorable Mention honors. The four were part of a senior class that won a program-record 61 games in their four years.

Junior goalkeeper Chris Solecki (Hainesport, N.J./Lenape) also earned Honorable Mention All-MAC Commonwealth and Academic All-District honors, as he set single season program records with a 0.52 goals against average and 17 wins. He also had seven shutouts, seventh-most in program history.

In his five years as head coach, Nate Gibboney has led the Warriors to three MAC Commonwealth championships, three NCAA Division III Championship appearances and a 72-22-13 (0.734) record with nine wins over nationally-ranked opponents.

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