#39 Fairleigh Dickinson Men's Soccer 2013 Preview

Fairleigh Dickinson Knights

Overall Rank: #39
Conference Rank: #1 NEC
#39 Farleigh Dickinson Men's Soccer 2013 Preview
Fairleigh Dickinson Team Page


Fairleigh Dickinson was the Cinderella of the 2012 NCAA Tournament. The Knights fought their way into the tournament by knocking off Monmouth and St. Francis (PA) to earn the Northeast Conference’s automatic bid. Those two games were very hard fought, but the Knights scrapped their way to victory. And that was just the beginning. FDU opened up the tournament at St. John’s and came away with a 1-0 victory thanks to an Anthony Moore goal. Next up was eighth seeded Saint Louis. After trading goals in the second half, the Knights got the game winner from Jack McVey. The trip to North Carolina to take on the Tar Heels was another exciting contest. FDU held off UNC for the full 90, but fell just a minute and half into overtime. It was a tough way to lose, but this team and program had already made their point.

2012 Record: 11-6-6, 6-1-3
2012 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Seth Roland

All three of the NCAA Tournament goal scorers are gone, yet the Knights return plenty of talent to what is suddenly a seasoned team. The FDU defense kept getting better as the 2012 campaign progressed. In their season opener, they allowed five goals against Stony Brook. The not so impressive defense continued through September where the Knights allowed three goals to NJIT and Penn and two to UAB and Princeton. During an eight game stretch starting in the beginning of October, the Knights allowed just one goal. Goalie Jacob Lissek started most of those games and is now going into his fourth season as the man between the pipes. Lissek deserves a lot of the credit for the double overtime win over the Billikens. He will have a very good and experienced defense in front of him too. Seniors Nicholas Walker and Jeffrey Barrenechea were both all-conference backs a year ago and sophomore Sam Durkot got a lot of experience as a freshman. With Marshall transfer Deshawn Forbes joining the mix, the FDU defense should look more like they did in October and less like September.

Jack McVey scored six goals and totaled five assists during his senior season. Jan Aubert netted five goals. Anthony Moore tallied two goals and seven assists. Those three were a huge, huge reason why Fairleigh Dickinson beat St. John’s and Saint Louis and nearly knocked off North Carolina. Nico Wright, who netted five goals, is ready to take over some of the scoring load. He is a big, tough 6-2 target. Wright just needs somebody to get him the ball. Simon Doherty had a very good freshman season and Godfred Baafi is an experienced junior who started 19 games in 2012. Wright will always be a threat, but it will be different now without McVey and Aubert by his side and Moore feeding in the ball. If the opposing defense can simply focus on Wright and not have to worry about anybody else, the offense will sputter.

Final Projection:
Last year was something special for the Knights. Another run like that through the tournament is extremely unlikely to happen again anytime soon. This is a team that did not even win the regular season tile in the NEC. They finished behind Quinnipiac, who also beat them 3-0 during the regular season. The Knights should be the most talented team in the conference and the defense will shut down many of their conference opponents. But there are a handful of other squads in the conference that can give this group a run for their money. When it all comes down to the conference tournament, Fairleigh Dickinson may need to get hot at the right time if the offense cannot find suitable replacements for McVey, Aubert and Moore.

Projected Postseason: NCAA

Returning Leaders:
Goals: Nico Wright, Junior, F, 5
Assists: Simon Doherty, Sophomore, F, 2; Nico Wright, Junior, F, 2
Shots: Nico Wright, Junior, F, 28
Saves: Jacob Lissek, Senior, GK, 62


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