2018 Season Preview
The Haverford College men's soccer team is set to open its 2018 campaign with an experienced group of returners ready to once again battle for the top spot in the Centennial Conference and the Mid-Atlantic Region. The Fords, who have advanced to the Centennial Conference Tournament in each of the last seven seasons, welcome first year head coach Zach Ward to lead the squad this fall.
Haverford is just one year removed from back-to-back Centennial Conference Championships in 2015 and 2016 and returns 10 seniors who are seeking the third Centennial Conference Championships of their respective careers. The team has played in the Centennial Conference Championship match five times during the past seven seasons, winning three titles. The Fords finished first in the regular season and have hosted the conference tournament three times during the past five years. The 2018 season kicks off Friday on Walton Field at 4:30 p.m. against Cabrini.
Nick Jannelli, a first-team All-CC performer last season and 2016 CC Rookie of the Year, headlines this position group as he has scored 21 goals and assisted on seven more during his first two seasons. He scored a team-leading 13 goals and had four assists last season, tallying multiple goals in a game five different times during his career. Classmate Peter Baroff joins him as an experienced option up top. Baroff appeared in every match last season, starting six. He has five career goals entering 2018, including two game-winners. Junior Rodrigo Zuniga also adds depth to this unit as he appeared in 11 matches last year.
Forward newcomers: Meinhardt Rentrup
Captain Michael Carr highlights a midfield grouping that will be bolstered by the addition of five newcomers in 2018. Carr is already a three-year starter, appearing in 61 matches throughout his career. He has added five goals and assisted on nine more during that time. Fellow seniors Max Krieg and Aditya Dias also bring valuable experience to that position. Krieg has appeared in 56 matches, with his two career goals winning a Centennial Conference Championship and NCAA Tournament match. Dias has played in 25 matches. Sophomore Ryan Sholes made 10 appearances in the midfield as a rookie while fellow classmate Kevin Kaufman saw action in seven matches – making one start – during that time.
Defense is where the Fords return the most experience as 10 of the 12 returning defenders have started during their careers, having combined for 183 career starts. Senior captain and 2017 second-team All-Centennial Conference selection Ben Clark has appeared in 44 matches during his career, making 39 starts. Fellow seniors, Nick John (56 appearances, 52 starts) and Reiss Berger (54 games played, 43 starts) have also been constants for the Haverford defense over the last three seasons. Seniors Nick Montgomery (35 appearances, 12 starts) and Alex Clark (43 games played, 11 starts) also bring valuable experience into the fold.
Sophomore Will Klein started 12 of his 13 matches he appeared last fall, while Mac Lyle has also been a starter when healthy along the back line. Three other sophomores: Zach Brown, Sykes Cargile, and Matthieu Maciejewski also spent part of last season in the starting XI. Senior Aaron Sterngass appeared in three games off the bench, while sophomore Brett Mozarsky played in four matches.
Senior Jeremy Astesano has started matches during each of the last two seasons. He holds a 16-5-5 mark as the goalie of record, going a perfect 7-0-3 as a sophomore before recording nine more wins in 2017. He has allowed just 1.05 goals per game during his career, the sixth-best mark in the program's decorated history. Junior Michael Iacono started the first two matches of his career in 2017 and logged over 333 minutes in goal last season. Allowing just 0.81 goals per game during his career, Iacono holds an unbeaten career record at 1-0-1.
Goalkeeper newcomer: Aaron Cohen
The Fords will play on Walton Field 11 times during their 17-game regular season. With a team that traditionally ranks among the highest in strength of schedule across all of Division III, the Fords will play seven teams who qualified to the NCAA Tournament last fall. Four of those matches (Cabrini, Johns Hopkins, Drew, and Dickinson) will be played at home, while the Fords make trips to NCAA qualifiers (Stevens, Rowan, and Franklin & Marshall).
Haverford went 10-5-3 last season with a 5-3-1 record in Centennial Conference matches. The Fords placed fourth in the Centennial Conference regular season standings, earning the right to host a home postseason match for the fifth straight season. The 2017 season came to a close with the Fords falling to Dickinson in the Centennial Conference first round match.