2017 Men's Soccer
Men's Soccer Season Preview
August 1, 2017
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University men’s soccer team will welcome 21 newcomers to the program this fall when Head Coach James Kusak kicks off year two at the helm. A trip to Kusak’s alma mater, Centre College, on the opening weekend of September will see the Beavers do battle with Spalding University and Georgetown College at the annual Alumni Classic. “I am excited to take the team down to my alma mater, and to play against Centre grads Adam Boyer (Spalding University) and Derek Willis (Georgetown College). The Alumni Classic will present a challenge to us, but will help in preparing us for HCAC play starting in October.”
A group of three seniors will provide leadership with seven returners back for the 2017 campaign. Blake Hershberger (Canton/McKinley), Brandon Spradling (Fairfield) and Adam Knott (Lima/Shawnee) have been instrumental in helping Coach Kusak build the foundation for a Bluffton men’s soccer program that is improving daily. “Senior leadership is important in any team and these three players have exhibited what we are looking for in a Bluffton men’s soccer player: commitment, hard work, and a desire to better themselves every day, both on the field and in the classroom.”
Three sophomores who played significant minutes for the Beavers in 2016 give Bluffton an experienced nucleus to build around. Nicholas Hoffman (Lima/Shawnee) and Ezekiel Davis (Columbus/Columbus Downtown) played in the majority of matches last season while Aaron Pennington (Belle Center/Benjamin Logan) also saw action in 17 contests as a freshman. Kaleb Bickley (Groveport/Groveport-Madison Senior) gives Bluffton experience at keeper heading into the 2017 campaign.
The Beavers play their lone scrimmage of the year at home vs. Trine University on August 24 with kickoff set for 3 p.m. Following a trip to Centre on opening weekend, the Beavers welcome Asbury College for the home opener on Wednesday, Sept. 6. Bluffton opens Heartland Conference with three straight road trips, including Earlham, rival Defiance on Oct. 4 and Franklin before Mount St. Joseph comes to town on Wednesday, Oct. 11. The regular season comes to a close on Saturday, Oct. 26, when the Beavers travel to Transylvania University for a women’s and men’s doubleheader. Come out and support your Beavers when they take to the pitch this fall!