#12 Akron Men's Soccer 2013 Preview

Akron Zips

Overall Rank: #12
Conference Rank: #1 Mid-American
#12 Akron Men's Soccer 2013 Preview
Akron Team Page


When it comes to men’s soccer programs, you generally do not think of the Mid-American Conference as a soccer powerhouse. Thanks to programs like Akron, the MAC is becoming known for more than just high-scoring football games on Thursday nights. Akron had a very successful season in 2012, and there is no reason to think the Zips will disappoint any fans this fall. Akron has another strong program, loaded with offensive and defensive talent, and the team is eager to prove last year wasn’t an aberration.

2012 Record: 18-1-3, 7-0-0
2012 Postseason: NCAA tournament (lost in third round, 2-1, to Creighton in PK shootout)
Coach: Jared Embick

Akron ranked in the top 10 in seven offensive categories and in the top five in five categories. Its goals-against average of 0.35, shutout percentage of 0.73 and .886 won-loss percentage were second in the country behind North Carolina for goals against and shutouts and Maryland for won-loss percentage. Reinaldo Brenes and his 11 goals from a year ago are back, eager to play one final season in a Zips uniform. Eric Stevenson, whose 19 points (seven goals, five assists) ranked third on the roster, is also back. Aodhan Quinn had 11 points last year and he is also back, meaning three of the top five scorers have returned and the forward/midfield portion of the field should be well-represented with experience.

Potential problems exist in net and on the offense. David Meves had 53 saves a year ago as he racked up a 17-1-3 record, but he is gone to graduation and that leaves no one with experience from last year in the net. Scott Caldwell (nine goals, 10 assists, 28 points) is also gone, taking the top offensive threat away from the team. Enough power is back on offense and defense to help the Zips overcome that loss, but Meves’ departure could be a problem. Four players will compete in net to succeed Meves, who had 16 shutouts last year and helped make the Akron net an impenetrable shield.

Final Projection:
What may save Akron in the long run is a schedule that does not appear too loaded with challenging teams. Saint Louis University is one of the first two games, but it is an exhibition and does not count in the standings. This game and another game against Marshall will help the Zips get ready for a MAC season where not a lot of teams should pose a challenge. No other MAC team will be a strong challenger for the Zips in the conference race, and that should help Akron overcome the losses of Caldwell and Meves and compete for another championship.

Projected Postseason: NCAA

Returning Leaders:
Goals: Reinaldo Brenes, Senior, F, 11
Assists: Eric Stevenson, Senior, MF, 5
Shots: Eric Stevenson, Senior, MF, 82
Saves: None

Madness 2014 MLS Draft Rankings:
#12 Aodhan Quinn
#20 Alfred Koroma
#23 Bryan Gallego
#39 Andrew Souders
#44 Reinaldo Brenes

Madness 2013 Men’s Soccer Recruit Rankings:
#19 Adam Najem


See All Men's Soccer Top 44 Team Previews