UMPI men begin season on Friday

17 years ago

The University of Maine at Presque Isle’s men’s soccer team enters the 2007 soccer season with optimism running high. With the return of 14 veteran players and the addition of some quality recruits, the Owls will certainly be a team to watch during the upcoming year.     Seventeenth-year head coach Alan Gordon is confident that the early season challenge of competing against some of the top teams in New England will help prepare the Owls to compete for an NCAA Division III Independent playoff berth.
The Owls open the 2007 season this Friday, Aug. 31 against the University of Maine at Fort Kent at 4 p.m. The Owls will then take on Thomas College at 1 p.m. on Saturday as part of the UMFK Kickoff tournament.
Leading the list of veteran players is senior back Chase Higgins of Presque Isle. Higgins was selected to the NCAA DIII All-Independent first team and is a four-year starter for the Owls. Higgins will mark the opposition’s top striker and is considered one of the top defenders in the league.
Senior captain Jerod Griffiths from New Glasgow, Nova Scotia will step into the sweeper position this season, while senior David Rudolph of Sullivan and Trevor Hews of Van Buren will solidify the remainder of the Owls defense.
Senior goal keeper Scott Clenchy, from Saskatchewan, Canada, will be in net for the third straight year for the Owls and looks to build on the seven shutouts recorded by the Owl defense in 2006.
Senior striker Robert Allan of Wallace, Nova Scotia returns to the Owl lineup after a productive junior season and will once again team up with sophomore Joe Pinault of Kezar Falls to create an explosive offensive attack. Senior captain Matt Petrie of Old Town will control the middle of the field for the Owls and looks to add an additional offensive attack with his outstanding speed and quickness.
Senior captain Chuck Reece of Bath will play both midfield and defense for the Owls, while second-year players Victor Jacques of Gouldsboro, Corey Harding of Plymouth and Chad Junkins of Ashland will see quality minutes at midfield. Sophomore Dylan Harris of Patten will see significant time on defense.
First-year players Devon and Josh Peaslee of Woolwich and Matt Carrington of Nottingham, United Kingdom have played well for the Owls in pre-season and will play both striker and midfield for a deep UM-Presque Isle team.
Other first-year players battling for playing time include Ben Costello of Bradley, Chad Parker of Truro, Nova Scotia, Courey Fournier of Bradley, Tony Hibbard of Bingham, Christ Smith of Phillips, Seth Dorr of Houlton, Hanad Ashkir of Portland, Oryan Lahti of Hallowell, Adam Thompson of Crouseville and Thad Swinehart of Liverpool, Pa.
Sasa Devic, a midfielder from Bosnia, will join the team this week and should have an immediate impact on the Owls lineup.