Brooklyn College Men's Soccer Looks to Return to CUNYAC Title Game in 2013
The Brooklyn College Men's Soccer team is coming off of one of its most successful campaigns in school history in 2012, as the Bulldogs posted a 13-5-3 overall record, including a 5-1-2 mark in the City University of New York Athletic Conference (CUNYAC), to earn the #2 seed in the conference championships.
2012 also marked the inaugural season for Brooklyn College Field, where the Bulldogs posted an unblemished 8-0-1 record.
After defeating #7 Hunter College (2-0) and #3 the City College of New York (1-0) in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively; Brooklyn eventually fell 4-2 against top seeded Baruch College in the championship final.
Despite their loss in the confernece final, the Bulldogs' season would continue into the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III Metro Championships, where BC earned the #6 seed. Brooklyn played #3 seed New Jersey City University (NJCU) to an even 3-3 tie in the quarterfinals and eventually lost a heartbreaker in penalty kicks, 4-3, to end their season.
On the strength of its regular season, BC was honored with six CUNYAC First Team All-Stars, as well as the Coach of the Year, in Rawle Hensford.
Head Coach Hensford, entering his fifth season at the helm of the BC Men's Soccer program, will look to guide his team back to the conference title game, as he returns three all-conference selections in seniors midfielder Dmitry Prokofyev, defender Peter Vavalle and goalkeeper Stamatis Boundouris.
Prokofyev, a transfer, made an immediate impact on the Bulldogs in his first season, playing in all 21 games on the year, while making 20 starts. He registered eight goals, including two game winners, to go with four assists for 20 points.
Vavalle started in all 17 games he played in, recording two goals and three assists for seven points, while helping to anchor a solid BC defense that racked up 10 shutouts on the year.
Boundouris, entering his fourth season on the squad, appeared in 19 of 21 matches a season ago; posting an 11-5-3 mark, while recording 80 saves, to go along with a 1.23 goals-against-average and a .777 save percentage in over 1688 minutes of action.
Other key returners that will be vital to Brooklyn's success in 2013 and a hopeful return to the conference championship game include seniors midfielder Peterson Petit Frere and defender Taras Frankivskyy and sophomore defender Steve Orellana.
Frere played in 20 games last season, starting in 16, recording five goals and six assists for 16 points. Frankivskyy and Orellana were key figures on the defensive unit and both will look to once again lead the team that ranked first in the CUNYAC in goals-against average (1.07).
Along with his key returners, Coach Hensford has brought in a number of key newcomers to help the Bulldogs reach the conference final for a second straight year and help the Bulldogs earn the right to play in the NCAA Division III Tournament.
Some of those newcomers include Kenny Benitez, Marco Thimm-Kaiser and Siarhei Auramenka.
Benitez comes to BC after playing four seasons at Leon M. Goldstein High School on the boys varsity soccer team, where he totaled 28 goals and 30 assists. Benitez was also a member of the Red Bulls Academy and the New York Cosmos Academy, as well as the U-20 El Salvador National team. Coach Hensford will look for Benitez to be a force in the midfield.
Thimm-Kaiser comes to Brooklyn from Hamburg, Germany and has been impressive during the pre-season as a forward and on the wings. Auramenka comes to BC from Mozyr, Belarus and will look to add depth on the defensive end of the field.
The Bulldogs will open their season on Friday, August 30th, as BC will play in the College of Staten Island Fall Classic. Brooklyn will go up against a familiar foe as the Bulldogs will look to avenge last seasons ECAC Quarterfinals loss against NJCU at 4:00 pm. BC will then conclude the classic against Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on Sunday, September 1st at 2:00 pm.
Brooklyn's home opener is set for Friday, September 6th against New York University (NYU) at 3:30 pm at Brooklyn College Field.