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Georgetown 2018 Team and Recruiting Class Review

School:  Georgetown 
Conference:  Big East
Coach:  Brian Wiese – 13th Season
2017 Record:  14-4-2 overall – 6-2-1 in conference
Final 2017 Season Rank:   16 

Five Year Win Total:

2013:  14

2014:  14

2015:  16

2016:  6

2017:  14

Key Personnel Losses from 2017 Team:  Midfielders Christopher Lema and Declan McCabe and forward Zach Knudson due to graduation.  Goalkeeper J.T. Marcinkowski who elected to forgo his senior season to enter the professional ranks.  
2017 Goals Scored and Goals Allowed:  35 goals scored – 15 goals allowed
2017 Goals Scored and Goals Allowed Per Game:  1.75 scored – 0.75 allowed
2017 Key Statistic:  Win total increased from 6 in 2016 to 14 in 2017 

Background:  Under Brian Wiese the Hoyas have become a top contender in the Big East Conference and on the national scene.  Georgetown has earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament a total of eight times (1994, 1997, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017) including five out of the last six seasons.  In 2012 they advanced to the national championship match.  In 2014 they advanced to the Elite Eight. In 2013 and 2014 the Hoyas advanced to the Sweet Sixteen.  

Georgetown won the Big East Tournament Championship in 2017 for the second time in the last three seasons. They were subsequently awarded the number fourteen seed in the NCAA Tournament.  The Hoyas were one and done in the NCAA Tournament when they were upset at home 2-1 by SMU in double overtime in the second round of the NCAA Tourney.  

Midfielder Christopher Lema was named a 2017 Second Team All-American by the United Soccer Coaches.  Lema and defender Brendan McDonough were named to the 2017 All-Big East First Team.  Forward Derek Dodson was named the Big East Freshman of the Year and was an All-Big East Second Team selection. Goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski and midfielder Declan McCabe were also named to the Big East All-Second Team.  Midfielder Jacob Montes and defender Sean O'Hearn joined Dodson on the 2017 Big East All-Freshman Team.  

Number Starters Slated to Return in 2018:  Seven


Coach Wiese stated, "We graduated a small number of players from last season, so we needed a small and specific group to come in to replace them.  This four-member recruiting class is a highly-competitive group, and will complement our returning squad nicely."

Joe DaLuz – Defender/Midfielder – San Diego, California – St Augustine – Played for the Nomads SC.  Membr of the Surf Soccer Club.  

Luke Kiley – Forward – Dublin, Ohio – Dublin Coffman – Played for Ohio Premier.  Named Mr. Soccer Ohio, the Ohio Division I Player of the Year, First Team All-State, Ohio Capital Conference District Player of the Year. Had eighty-four goals and forty career assists in high school.  Named to USYS Nationals Best XI in 2016 and 2017. 

Zach Riviere – Midfielder – Piscataway, New Jersey – Saint Joseph – Played for PDA. Among top ten goal scorers in the USSDA in 2017-17 with twenty-one goals.

Sean Zawadski – Midfielder – Olmsted Falls, Ohio – Olmsted Falls – Played for Crew SC Academy.  Has trained with the U.S. Men's National Team.  

Outlook for the 2018 Season:  The Hoyas regained their equilibrium in 2017 with a fourteen win season and a berth in the NCAA Tournament rebounding from a six win 2016 season during which they faced the challenge of signficant rebuilding.  With seven starters slated to return in 2018, the Hoyas look to be well positioned for another step forward in 2018. 

Difference makers up-top are key and sometimes scare commodities. You need look no further than the fact that Georgetown was held to a total of seventeen goals in 2016 (and six wins) for evidence of that. However, for the most part goal scoring has not been a problem for the Hoyas in the recent past under Wiese with finishers like Brandon Allen and Steve Neumann on board and it should not be a problem in 2018.

Sophomore Derek Dobson and junior Achara, who combined to account for seventeen of Georgetown's thirty-five goals last year, return in 2018 to power the attack up-top. Dobson who found the back of the net a total of  ten times as a freshman will likley take on an even larger role in 2018.  Achara (7g, 1a) who has been hampered with injuries the past two seasons found the back of the net seven times last year while only appearing in eleven contests. His ability to stay healthly projects to be a key variable in Georgetown's productivity on the offensive side of the ball in 2018.  Freshman forward Luke Kiley is among the newcomers who could add additional punch and depth to the offense.

Some reloading will be required in the midfield due to the graduation of Christopher Lema (4g, 4a) who was named Georgetown's MVP in 2016 and 2017 and Declan McCabe (3g, 10a) who had a breakout season in 2017 that included being named the Most Outstanding Player of the Big East Conference Tournament.  The good news is that Brian Weise has a solid contingent of returning linkmen upon which to build.  Seniors Kyle Zajec (1g, 1a) and Ethan Lochner (2g, 3a) and sophomore Jacob Montes (2g, 5a) are among returning midfielders who were starters last year. Senior Edson Martinez (0g, 4a), junior Davey Mason and sophomore Jack Beer (1g, 0a) are among other returning players who look to be in the mix for a greater role in the midfielder or up-top in 2018. 

The backline looks to be a team strength with seniors Brendan McDonough and Peter Schropp (2g, 0a) and junior Dylan Nealis (0g, 2a)  who have two years of starting experience under their belts and sophomore Foster McCune (1g, 0a) who gained valuable experience last year all slated to return.  McDonough is a team leader who brings toughness and leadership as well as consistency and organization to the defensive side of the ball. 

The biggest unanswered question heading into the 2018 season is the play between the pipes due to the decision of JT Marcinkowski to forgo his senior season to enter the professional ranks.  Marcinkowski has been the starter in goal for the past three seasons and played every minute between the pipes for the Hoyas last year. The fact that the backline will be experienced is a plus in regard to the transition to a new face in goal but nonetheless it remains a key unanswered question and critical success factor heading into the 2018 season. It is also a plus that Georgetown is one of six teams that will participate in the U.S. Soccer 2018 Spring Men's College Program.  The experience gained against tough competition during the spring should help facilitate the transition to a new netminder.   

There is a lot to be encouraged about at Georgetown on both sides of the ball heading into the 2018 campaign but also some uncertainty.  The Hoyas have reached the point that a serious run at the Big East title and a high national ranking are now reasonable expectations.  All things considered, Wiese should feel pretty good about the way his team rebounded last year, the performance of the underclassmen who now have the benefit of an additional year of experience to combine with their talent, and the prospects for continued development across the board in 2018.     

Posted in 2018 Team Reviews

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