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Men's Soccer Opens Season On Saturday
CHICAGO - Blue Demons travel to Evanston as part of the four-team North Shore Classic at Northwestern's Thomas Sports Complex. DePaul plays Evansville on Saturday and Vanderbilt on Sunday. Kickoff for both games is set for noon.
CHICAGO – The DePaul men’s soccer team opens the 2003 season in Evanston as part of the four-team North Shore Classic. The Blue Demons take on Evansville Saturday before playing Vanderbilt on Sunday. Both games kickoff at .
Looking at the Blue Demons
DePaul enters the regular season with 20 letterwinners returning from last year’s team. A year ago the Blue Demons put together one of the top turnaround in college soccer. Their record of 8-9-2 last season improved upon the 3-13-2 mark in 2001 to rank among the nation’s most improved teams.
The Blue Demons posted a 1-0 win over LewisUniversity last Saturday in an exhibition match. It was their only tune-up prior to the regular season. Goalkeepers Michael Timlin and Jeff Klitzke each played a half in the shutout.
Checking Out the Opponents
Evansville – The Purple Aces begin the season with new coach Dave Golan. He replaces Fred Schmalz, who retired after compiling a 403-196-56 record in 33 years at Evansville. A year ago, Schmalz led the Purple Aces to a 7-11-2 record. Evansville could be without their returning leading scorer this weekend as Marc Burch is playing with the U.S. U-20 National Team in Spain. Last season, he led the club with 20 points on four goals and a dozen assists.
Vanderbilt – The Commodores travel to Evanston for their first two matches of the season. They play host Northwestern on Saturday afternoon. Vanderbilt was 3-15 last year and return 13 letterwinners. Head coach Tim McClements is starting his eighth season and holds a 63-73-4 record. Jack Hartley returns as the leading scorer after tallying seven points on three goals and an assist in 2002.
In the annual C-USA preseason poll, the Blue Demons were picked eighth by the league’s 10 coaches. The Saint Louis Billikens were chosen as the league favorite while Louisville’s Adrian Cann was the preseason Player of the Year.
2003 C-USA Preseason Poll (as selected by C-USA coaches)
1. Saint Louis
10. East Carolina
2003 C-USA Preseason Awards
Player of the Year – Adrian Cann, Jr., D, Louisville
Mira Mupier, Jr., F, Charlotte
Tim Brown, Sr., MF, Cincinnati
Josh Gardner, Jr., MF, Cincinnati
Simon Bird, Sr., F, Louisville
Adrian Cann, Jr., D, Louisville
Nick Gannon, Sr., D, Saint Louis
Martin Hutton, Sr., GK, Saint Louis
Kevin Wickart, Sr., MF/D, Saint Louis
Derek Gutierrez, Sr., F/MF, Marquette
Marin Pusek, Sr., MF, UAB
Hunter West, So., MF/F, USF
Jared Vock, Jr., D, USF
Following the opening weekend on the road, DePaul returns to Chicago next weekend for a Friday afternoon match at Wish Field. The kickoff against Drake is the first half of a home-opening doubleheader with the women’s program. The women’s team finishes the afternoon’s festivities with a game against Toledo.