The 2013 edition of the Central Connecticut men's soccer team begins preseason camp on Friday, and head coach Shaun Green, entering his 29th season with the Blue Devils, will welcome 11 new players to the squad this season.
The Blue Devils were picked to finish second in the Northeast Conference in the preseason poll of the league's head coaches. Central was 8-8-2 overall in 2012 and finished 6-3-1 in NEC action.
CCSU Men's Soccer 2013 Roster
Here is a list of the newcomers who will join CCSU this season:
Qualter hails from York, England. The 6-2 defender played for the Leeds United Youth Academy and represented the Republic of Ireland on the Under 19 Youth National Team. Qualter played for the Leeds United from age 11 to 18. He was also head scholar and captain of the youth team.
"Conor is a very experienced defender who has played at the highest levels of youth soccer in England. He is a dominant, aggressive player who is good in the air and strong in the tackle. He is a verbal leader on the field and we will look to him immediately to control our defense. He is a top class player and we are extremely fortunate that he has chosen CCSU to continue his soccer career and education." - Head Coach Shaun Green
Randall is a dynamic goal scorer from Devon, England. He played for the Notts County FC Youth Academy. Randall was the Player of the Year for Hook & Chessington United in the 2003-04 season, Player of the Year for West Hill Wasps FC in the 2004-05 season and Player of the Year for Sainsbury's PLC in the 2007-08 season.
"James is a top quality forward who will make an immediate impact in our forward line. He possess great speed and understanding of attacking play. He is a great finisher and plays extremely well with his back to goal. We feel very fortunate James chose CCSU and look forward to seeing James in a Blue Devil shirt this season. He will be an exciting player in the NEC this season." - Head Coach Shaun Green
Hannity is from Sheffield, England and is a versatile player who can play in midfield or on defense. He is a transfer from Lancaster University and will pursue a master's degree at Central. Hannity is also the cousin of former CCSU All-American, Thomas Obasi.
"Keir is a great signing for us because he is such a versatile and talented player. He can play in many positions due to his athletic ability and skill. Keir is a mature student who will bring leadership and experience to our young team." - Head Coach Shaun Green
Zurita is a transfer from Monmouth University and hails from Stamford, CT. He was awarded the "Golden Boot" in this summer's Super-20 League Championship held in Bradenton, FL. He scored four goals in three games for Beachside FC. Zurita was the 2011-12 Gatorade Connecticut Soccer Player of the Year, Connecticut Soccer Coaches Association Player of the Year and a high School All-American. Zurita is the leading scorer in Bunnell High School history, registering 96 goals and 42 assists in his career as a four-year starter and two-year captain. In addition to his All-American selection, he was named All-New England in 2010 and 2011, selected to the Connecticut Senior Bowl in 2011, named 2011 Greater New Haven Referee Association Boys Player of the Year and was named a 2010 Gatorade Player of the Year Finalist. Zurita played club soccer in the USSF Academy system for South Central Premier and attended the USA U17 National Training Center in 2011. He was also named to the Academy National Select Team.
"Zach is a phenomenal player with great credentials and we are extremely excited he has selected to play at CCSU. Zach had a great spring season leading the team in goals. His technical ability, vision and creativity will fit perfectly with our attacking style of play. I have always respected Zach as a player and I feel he can grow in our program and be an immediate impact player. Zach epitomizes the type of home-grown talent we want to feature in our program at CCSU. We can't wait to see Zach in a Blue Devil uniform this fall." - Head Coach Shaun Green.
Calderon is a talented player from New Haven, CT. The 6-0 defender has played at the highest youth and national team level. He plays for the Puerto Rico Under 20 National Team and played in the 2013 World Cup Qualifiers against Haiti, Bermuda, Barbados and Curacoa. Calderon played club soccer in the USSF Academy system for FC Westchester from 2010 to 2013 and also played for South Central Premier from 2008 to 2010.
"Neekoli is a tenacious defender with a winning passion on the field. When I first saw him play I was impressed by his desire and winning attitude. He is a big, strong athlete with good skill and passing ability. He will push for a starting role from day one at CCSU. We are excited to have Neekoli as part of the future of CCSU soccer." - Head Coach Shaun Green.
Soares hails from Bridgeport, CT. The 6-0 defender is a transfer student from Monroe College and attended Central High school in Bridgeport. In two seasons at Monroe, Soares played defense on a team that appeared in two national tournaments, won two Region XV Championships and two district titles. The Mustangs have been ranked in the national top 20 in each of the past two years, earning a number #1 ranking in 2011.
"Jenilo is a tough defender who will compete immediately for a starting role. He is such a positive influence on the field and in practice that he will be a great asset to our squad. He comes from a top program and has had a great coach in Marcus DiBernardo, a former player and assistant coach at CCSU. I am looking forward to seeing Jenilo continue to develop his game as a Blue Devil." - Head Coach Shaun Green.
Olivia, a Stamford, CT native and a transfer student from Monroe College, attended Westhill High school in Stamford. In two seasons at Monroe College, Olivia played midfield on a team that appeared in two national tournaments, won two Region XV Championships and two district titles. The Mustangs have been ranked in the national top 20 in each of the past two years, earning a number #1 ranking in 2011.
"Christian is a skillful midfielder with great work rate and excellent vision. He will certainly add depth to our midfield. He comes from a top program and has had a great coach in Marcus DiBernardo, a former player and assistant coach at CCSU. I am looking forward to seeing Christian on the field this fall." - Head Coach Shaun Green.
Okoro is from Cheshire, CT. The speedy forward played club soccer for the USSF Academy team, South Central Premier. He also played high school soccer at Notre Dame West Haven.
"E.J. is a powerful athlete who will add depth to our squad this season. He is a hard-working player with raw talent. His speed can be a great asset to our team offense. We are looking forward to seeing E.J. develop as a player at CCSU." - Head Coach Shaun Green.
Rebello is from Danbury, CT, and was a three-year varsity starter at Danbury High School. He was team captain his senior year and led the team in assists. He was also named All-FCIAC Second Team as a senior and was selected to the Connecticut Senior Bowl.
"Brian had a great spring season with the team and proved he can be an asset to our squad. He has an excellent attitude and is a versatile player who can help us in many positions." - Head Coach Shaun Green
Arbieto-Lopez is from Norwalk, CT and transferred to CCSU from Lehman College. As a freshman at Lehman College he registered three goals and led the team in assists per game en route to a conference championship. In his sophomore season he was named All-Conference and was the conference leader in assists and assists per game. He played at Norwalk High School and was a four-year varsity member, twice named All-Conference and was an All-State Honorable Mention in his senior year.
"Willy is a great person and talented player. He had an impressive spring with us and proved he could handle Division I soccer. Willy will add depth to our squad while competing for a starting role." - Head Coach Shaun Green.
Heroux is from Hampton, CT and was selected as an All-State player in 2012 at East Hampton High School. He was a senior co-captain and a four year varsity player for East Hampton which compiled a four-year record of 54-9-1. He was the starting sweeper on the 2011 16-1 team that produced the best win-loss record ever at East Hampton. Heroux was also invited to participate in the 2012 Senior Bowl which showcased the best senior soccer players in Connecticut.
"Nathaniel is a natural athlete and will add depth to our team. I love his attitude and enthusiasm on the field. He will continue to develop at CCSU and we are pleased to have him as a student-athlete with the Blue Devils." - Head Coach Shaun Green