FORT MYERS, Fla. – On Tuesday, College Soccer News released its list of college soccer’s top 40 recruiting classes. This fall’s 11-member freshmen class landed the No. 14 FGCU men’s soccer program the No. 36 recruiting class in the nation, according to the media outlet.
Entering the 2011 campaign ranked No. 14 according to Goal.com, the Eagles welcome the 11-member freshmen class which includes forwards Xavier Silva (Boca Raton, Fla./North Broward Preparatory School) and Santiago Echeverri (Kissimmee, Fla./Celebration HS), midfielders Tomas Granitto (Weston, Fla./Cypress Bay HS), Yianni Sarris (Mentor, Ohio/Cleveland Saint Ignatius HS) and Christian Velez (Miami, Fla./Ferguson Senior HS), defensemen Federico Crespo-Pauly (Heredia, Costa Rica/St. Paul College/Universidad Latina), Christian Robbs (Athens, Greece/American Community Schools of Athens) and Esteban Montano (Coral Springs, Fla./North Broward Prep High school), as well as, goalkeepers Nathan Ingham (Keswick, Ontario, Canada/Keswick HS), Tomas Cerda (Orlando, Fla./Olympia HS) and Jose Diaz de Villegas (Palmetto Bay, Fla./Gulliver Preparatory HS).
College Soccer News (CSN) carefully analyzed the available information regarding the 2011 recruiting classes throughout the country to arrive at the top 40 rankings. CSN annually applies the same criteria to determine its recruiting class rankings in an effort to objectively and consistently rank recruiting classes. The criteria utilized applies a lot of weight to the extent to which a recruiting class meets the perceived gaps a team needs to fill and the overall potential of the recruits to increase the competitiveness of the team. Playing experience against top level competition was a key factor. Transfers were taken into consideration in rating classes.
College Soccer News had the following to say about FGCU’s ranked recruiting class:
36. Florida Gulf Coast University - This class can hold their own with any other newcomers in the country. Forward Xavier Silva and midfielder Tomas Granitto are prime timers who played with the Weston FC Academy. Midfielder Yianni Silva from Ohio is an NSCAA High School All-American. Defender Federico Crespo-Pauly played with the Costa Rican U-17 National Team. Keeper Nathan Ingham rounds out the class. – College Soccer News
With five first place votes, the Blue and Green topped the Atlantic Sun Conference preseason poll with 77 points, one point better than 2010 A-Sun Tournament champion ETSU (76) which received the remaining four first place votes. Additionally, the Eagles had four players named to the preseason All-Conference team, including a pair of unanimous selections and the Defensive Player of the Year in goalkeeper Adam Glick (Leola, Pa./Conestoga Valley HS). Entering their first year of postseason eligibility following the four-year reclassification period, the Eagles also received five votes as the 2011 tournament favorites.
Finishing the season with a 13-3-2 record (9-0-0 A-Sun), the Eagles finished the 2010 season ranked No. 20 nationally. The Blue and Green are set to return 20 players from last year's A-Sun regular season championship squad, including six All-Conference performers, when they open the 2011 campaign with an exhibition match against Florida Southern on Aug. 17 at the FGCU Soccer Complex at 7 p.m. The 2011 home opener is scheduled for Aug. 26 at 7 p.m. with in-state rival FAU.