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Green Bay 2018 Team and Recruiting Class Review

School:  Green Bay 
Conference:  Horizon League
Coach:  Jeremy Bonomo – 4th Season 
2017 Record:  9-5-2 overall, 7-1-1 in conference
2017 Final Season Ending Rank:  N/A
Key Personnel Losses from 2017 Team:  Forward Audi Jepson and midfielder Cody Newton due to graduation. 

Five Year Win Total:

2013:  7

2014:  6

2015:  5

2016:  5

2017:  9

2017 Goals Scored and Goals Allowed:  26 goals scored – 23 goals allowed,  
2017 Goals Scored and Goals Allowed Per Game:  1.53 scored and 1.35 allowed
2017 Key Statistic:  Best conference record in school history in 2017 and best win total since 2013. 

Background:  Green Bay had one of its most successful season in program history in 2017.  The Phoenix had the best conference record in school history with seven wins and secured the program's first-ever Horizon League Regular Season Title.  Green Bay  also advanced to the Horizon League Tournament Championship match for the first time since 2011.  

Green Bay is part of  the ten member Horizon League which was formed in 1979. 

The Phoenix earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament in 1983 and 2009. 

Forward Audi Jepson (11g, 5a) was named the 2017 Horizon League Offensive Player of the Year and a First Team All-Conference selection.  Jepson was also named to the United Soccer Coaches All-Great Lakes First Team.  . 

Jeremy Bonomo was honored as the 2017 Horizon League Coach of the Year. 

Forward Tomer Zloczower (5g, 8a) was named to the JSR All-American First Team and was an All-Horizon League First Team member. Midfielder Buran Huseini (1g, 1a) and defender Marcos Bautista (2g, 4a) were 2017 All-Horizon League Second Team selections.  Defender Adam Mansa was named to the Horizon League All-Freshman Team.   

Number Starters Slated to Return in 2018:  Ten


Fredi Ortega – Midfielder – Chicago, Illinois – Transfer from Tyler Junior College.  Played for Chicago Fire. 

Joey Bourgeois – Forward – Ajax, Ontario – Played for Vaughn SC.

Clayton Brown – Midfielder – Markham, Ontario – Played for Vaughn SC. 

Abaraham Hill – Midfielder – Rochester, Minnesota – Played for Minnesota Thunder Development Academy.  

Jacob Simons – Defender – Brooklyn Park, Minnesota – Played for Minnesota Thunder Academy 

Outlook for 2018 Season:  Green Bay looks to be a program on the rise.  The Phoenix return ten starters who for the most part have been playing together since the 2016 season.  They also have added a recruiting class that includes several newcomers that have the potential to contribute right away.

Green Bay is coming off a break through 2017 season during which they won the Horizon League Regular Season title for the first time in school history and advanced to the championship match in the League Tournament where they fell to a UIC team that has won the tournament and the berth in the NCAA Tournament that comes with it for the past two seasons.  

Jeremy Bonomo enters his fourth season at the helm of the program with what looks to be the most experienced and the deepest team from top to bottom that he has put on the pitch to date at Green Bay. In the past the Phoenix have had to lean heavily on inexperienced players in key roles but that should not be the case in 2018. 

Just how the additional experience will be reflected in the win-loss column will have a lot to do with how well Green Bay is able to fill the huge void that exists on the offensive side of the ball due to the graduation of forward Audi Jepson who was the 2017 Horizon League Offensive Player of the Year.  Jepson was a four-year starter who was responsible for eleven of Green Bays twenty-four goals last year including five game-winners. Jepson was the gem of the Phoenix attack in 2017 and leaves some big shoes to fill.  

Junior forwards Tomer Zloczower (5g, 8a) and Robleh Omar (2g, 1a) are among returning players who Bonomo will likely count on for offensive productivity up-top in 2018.  Zloczower is a playmaker whose eight helpers last year led the Horizon League. Look for Zlozcower to be at the heart of the attack in 2018. Omar is a speedster with a solid upside who has been primarily in a supporting role the past two seasons.  

Juniors Marcos Bautista (2g, 4a), Ian Smith (1g, 0a) and Brian Vang return to lead what should be a solid and deep group of midfielders.  Smith and Vang have two years of starting experience under their belts which will enable them to hit the ground running. Bautista, a 2017 All-Horizon League Second Team selection, had a banner season last year which he should build on in 2018.   

The backline looks to be a team strength with four starters slated to return.  Senior back Buran Huseini (1g, 1a) is a three-year starter who will anchor the defense.  He will be joined by juniors Andre Baires (1g, 1a) and Jack Bradford who have two years of starting experience under their belts and sophomore Adam Mansa who led the team in minutes played last year. 

Junior Nikola Kahvedzic who posted a 1.14 goals against average and thirteen starts in goal in 2017 returns between the pipes. 

Green Bay took a big step forward last year and will look to ride that momentum in 2018.  Replacing Jepson presents the biggest challenge but Zloczower, who was Green Bays second leading scorer last year, is a solid finisher who could prove to a big part of the solution.   

The bottom line is that the potential exists for another step forward in 2018 including a return to the NCAA Tournament if everything falls into place.     

Posted in 2018 Team Reviews

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