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Tim Hopkinson
Courtesy: ODU Sports

ODU Soccer Monarchs Picked Fourth In C-USA Pre-Season Poll

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: August 07, 2013
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IRVING, Texas – The ODU Soccer Monarchs have been picked to finish fourth in this year’s C-USA men’s preseason soccer poll and senior forward Tim Hopkinson (Nottingham, England) was selected to the preseason All-C-USA men’s soccer team as selected by the league’s head coaches.   

The Soccer Monarchs have advanced to three straight and nine of the last 11 NCAA tournaments under head coach Alan Dawson. Tim Hopkinson led the Monarchs with 10 goals last year and tallied a total of 25 points. He also scored 10 goals as a sophomore. In 2012, he ranked 21st nationally at 1.56 points per game. Hopkinson was a first team All-Conference and second team NSCAA All-Region selection, last year.

The Soccer Monarchs open the season with an exhibition match on Sunday, Aug. 18 against last year’s NCAA national runner-up Georgetown at the ODU Soccer Complex for a 7 p.m. kickoff.

The Tulsa Golden Hurricane, which won the 2012 Conference USA championship and advanced to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16, has been selected as the preseason Conference USA men’s soccer favorite by a vote of the league’s head coaches. Tulsa striker Cristian Mata has been tabbed as Preseason Offensive Player of the Year while New Mexico defender Kyle Venter was named Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.

Mata, a sophomore from Tulsa, Okla., started 19-of-20 games as a true freshman and led the Golden Hurricane in goals (14), assists (6) and points (34). He was named as the Conference USA Freshman of the Year, the C-USA Offensive Player of the Week twice, and was tabbed to the All-C-USA first team and C-USA All-Freshman Team. Mata also was selected to the College Soccer News Team of the Week, the Top Drawer Soccer Freshman Team of the Season and was named to the NSCAA Midwest All-Region first team.

Charlotte led all league teams with three preseason team selections, while New Mexico and Tulsa both had two players named to the squad. In all, seven teams were recognized with players on the preseason team.

Tulsa led a competitive team poll that featured six teams that made NCAA Tournament appearances in 2012, garnering 92 points and three first-place votes to edge out league newcomer New Mexico as the preseason favorite. The Lobos also made a Sweet 16 appearance in 2012 and received 90 points and four first-place votes in the preseason poll.

Charlotte, the 2011 national runner-up, returns to Conference USA in 2012 and is the third-place pick with 82 points and one first-place vote. Old Dominion (61 points), Kentucky (56) and UAB (55, one first-place vote) held spots Nos. 4-6 in the poll. South Carolina, FIU, Marshall and Florida Atlantic rounded out the poll.

More than 20 all-conference players return to C-USA teams in 2013, including eight who earned first-team all-league recognition and 12 players who were named to an NSCAA All-Region team.

The talented group of returning players will face a challenging slate of nonconference opponents in 2013, featuring 21 matches against teams that qualified for last season’s NCAA Tournament. The 21 matches are against NCAA qualifiers that posted a combined record of 24-15-9 during postseason play. Notably, league members will face all four College Cup participants in a combined seven matches.

The 2013 Conference USA Men’s Soccer Championship will be held in Charlotte, N.C., Nov. 13-17. The men’s soccer regular season kicks off Friday, August 30.

Fans can follow C-USA online on Twitter (@Conference_USA) with the hashtag #CUSAMSOC and on Facebook (facebook.com/ConferenceUSA).

2013 Preseason C-USA Men’s Soccer Poll

Tulsa (3)

92

New Mexico (4)

90

Charlotte (1)

82

Old Dominion

61

Kentucky

56

UAB (1)

55

South Carolina

44

FIU (1)

37

Marshall

23

Florida Atlantic

10

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year

  • Cristian Mata, F, Tulsa

Preseason Defensive Player of the Year

  • Kyle Venter, D, New Mexico

2013 Preseason All-C-USA Men’s Soccer Team

  • Thomas Allen, D, Charlotte
  • Giuseppe Gentile, F, Charlotte
  • Tyler Gibson, M, Charlotte
  • Steven Perinovic, D, Kentucky
  • Michael Calderon, M, New Mexico
  • Kyle Venter, D, New Mexico
  • Tim Hopkinson, F, Old Dominion
  • Braeden Troyer, M, South Carolina
  • Cristian Mata, F, Tulsa
  • Omar Mata, M, Tulsa
  • Darion Copeland, D, UAB

 

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