FORT MYERS, Fla. – After a couple delays due to lightning in the area, the No. 14 FGCU men’s soccer team took the field for its practice of the 2011 preseason on Thursday evening.
The Eagles participated in morning conditioning before taking the pitch for actual practice. FGCU enters the start of the program’s fifth season with a No. 14 national ranking according to Goal.com and also earned the No. 24 on the College Soccer News poll.
FGCU is coming off a breakout 2010 campaign that saw it post a 13-3-2 overall record, including a perfect 9-0 mark in Atlantic Sun action en route to the regular season title. The Blue and Green out-scored their fellow league opponents by a 26-2 margin and finished with a No. 20 ranking from Soccer America.
With five first place votes, the Blue and Green topped this year’s A-Sun 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.
FGCU returns 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.