Aug. 21, 2003
After a difficult 2002 season, which was plagued by injuries and close decisions, Head Coach Mike Noonan has high hopes for the upcoming season with the healthy return of several key players along with a group of talented newcomers.
The Bears, who lost five games by just one goal and tied the school record with four ties, finished the 2002 season with a 5-8-4 overall and 1-4-2 Ivy League record. Adom Crew '04 (Columbia, MD) was on his way to a record-setting season before an injury sidelined him just eight games into the season. This was just one of many injuries the Bears suffered throughout the season. However, with a year removed and injuries healed, Brown looks to return to its winning ways of the past this season. The winners of six of the last nine Ivy League titles, Brown is the most successful program in Ivy soccer history with 16 Ivy titles overall.
Despite the loss of two-time First Team All-Ivy selection Dustin Branan '03, the Bears' dominance in the Ivy League should continue with the return of a strong nucleus, including four players who earned All-Ivy distinction last year.
The Bears look to add another Ivy League title to the list behind the play of two-time captain Crew, who is considered one of the top players in the Ivy League and in the nation. At the time of his injury last season, Crew, a natural goal scorer, was tied for fourth in the nation with ten goals and fifth in the nation in scoring with 22 points. Despite missing the final nine games of the season, he finished the year tied for the lead in goals and second in scoring among Ivy League players. Crew earned Second Team All-Ivy and Third Team All-New England postseason honors in addition to being named a District I Verizon Academic All-American.
Brown's backfield will have to compensate for the loss of Branan, who was among the best defenders in the league. The Bears will look to Jeff Larentowicz '05 (West Chester, PA), Edward Thurston '04 (Washington, DC) and Derrick Woodard '04 (Blacklick, OH) to fill the void. Larentowicz, a hard-nosed defender, capped off an excellent season by earning Second Team All-Ivy honors last season. Both Thurston and Woodard bring a wealth of experience to the backfield as they will be playing their final year at Brown.
Offense: Crew will headline the Bears' attack as he has already racked up 38 points in 44 games in his career. He needs just six more points to break into the top 18 of Brown's all-time scoring list, a history that spans 77 years.
Another key member of Brown's offense is forward/midfielder Ibrahim Diane '06 (Potomac, MD). His four goals and two assists as a rookie last year ranked him second on the team. Diane, whose speed and clever footwork dazzled the crowds at Stevenson Field, had to contend with the opponents top defenders once Crew went down with his season-ending injury. He was named All-Ivy Honorable Mention and also received the Joseph Paterno Award as Brown's first-year male varsity athlete of the year. Diane has worked hard in the off-season and should emerge as one of the premier forwards in the Ivy League as the season progresses.
Seth Quidachay-Swan '04 (San Francisco, CA) is also expected to contribute to the Bears' offense as he finished the 2002 season third on the team in scoring with three goals and one assist for seven points. Marcos Romaneiro '05 (North Brunswick, NJ) will also look to step into a bigger role this season, as Brown will need to compensate for the loss of his brother, Eduardo Romaniero '03. Brian Perry '06 (Manlius, NY), who earned more and more playing time as the season went on last year, will also compete for more time on the field this season.
Enhancing the offensive charge will be incoming freshman Andrew Daniels '07 (Milwaukee, WI). Daniels is a NSCAA/adidas All-American as well as the 2002 NSCAA/adidas State Player of the Year. In two years, Daniels totaled 27 goals and 16 assists for Marquette University High School while leading the school to two straight state championships in 2001 and 2002. The addition of Daniels, along side Crew and Diane, gives the front line the potential of being one of the most dangerous scoring trio's in the league.
Midfield: Matt Goldman '04 (Knoxville, TN) will be the mainstay for the Bears in the midfield this season. Goldman, an outstanding hard-working playmaker, started in all 17 games for Brown last season and was tied for the team lead in assists with three. Keith Caldwell '06 (Braintree, MA), a crafty playmaker, had an impressive freshman campaign as he played in 16 games, earning nine starts with three assists to tie with Goldman for the team lead.
Bobby Dobbie '06 (Rochester, MI) saw considerable playing time as a freshman, playing in 15 games and starting seven of them. He will step into a bigger role this season with a year's experience under his belt as the midfield needs to fill the void left by Evan Ryan '03 and Omar Macedo '03.
Eric Fuechtbaum '06 (East Brunswick, NJ), who has great speed, will look to make a valuable contribution to the team this year with one year of collegiate experience under his belt. Matthew Boras '06 (Glenwood, MD) and Mike Matteoli '06 (Citrus Heights, CA), who missed their entire freshman campaigns due to injury, along with Brian Weeks '06 (Bexley, OH) and team veteran Carl Quindel '04 (Milwaukee, WI), will all compete for playing time.
The coaching staff recruited a group of talented midfielders who will join the team this season. A key addition to the team will be Ian Premo '07 (Florence, MA). Premo earned WNEPSSA All-New England status as a senior at Williston-Northampton Academy and was a two-time All-State selection.
Fellow freshmen Brian Joyce '07 (North Bethesda, MD), a First Team All-MET selection and Ben Brackett '07 (West Des Moines, IA), a member of the highly successful Des Moines Menace Club Team, will vie for immediate playing time. Other additions include Alexan Simon '07 (Silver Springs, MD), an All-MET Honorable Mention and Colin Mahoney '07 (Amherst, MA), a member of the highly competitive Northfield Mt. Hermon High School team of the WNEPSSA.
Defense: Despite the loss of four-year starter Branan, the Bears' defense returns several veteran players including Thurston, Woodard and Larentowicz. Thurston has proved to be a valuable defender for the Bears, playing in all 17 games, starting 15 of them last season. Larentowicz, a two-year starter, provided the Bears some offense while also guarding the back line in 2002. He scored the tying goal against nationally ranked Boston College with 1:23 left in regulation, sending the game into overtime. Woodard, who was also injured for part of the season, played in 13 games, starting ten in 2002. Sean Gosselin '06 (Northbridge, MA) will see increased time as well in his sophomore campaign after playing in 14 games as a freshman.
The addition of Team Canada captain Matt Britner '07 (Halifax, Canada) will only make the defense stronger as he will most likely see action from the start of the season. A future leader for the Bears, Britner is fast, strong in the air and strikes the ball well.
Goal: Christopher Gomez '05 (Bellflower, CA) returns as Brown's net minder. Gomez had an excellent sophomore campaign last season, earning the starting duties early on in the season. For his play, Gomez was named Third Team All-New England. He finished the year as the Ivy League leader in saves with a 5.83 per game average and had five or more saves in nine games. He posted a 1.21 goals against average with a 5-5-3 record and three shutouts as well. Gomez had several remarkable saves throughout the year with his quick reflexes and unwavering confidence in making risky plays.
Incoming freshman David Semenza '07 (Honolulu, HI), an All-League selection, will also vie was playing time