The Campbell men’s soccer team has been selected fourth in the 2016 Big South Conference preseason poll as announced by the league this week. The poll was conducted by the league’s head coaches.
The Camels are entering the second season under head coach Dustin Fonder. Fonder led Campbell to a five-win turnaround in 2015 and its first postseason victory in six seasons. CU claimed a fourth place finish in the Big South with a 5-4 conference mark and finished the season with a 10-9 overall record.
Sophomore Seth Jones returns for the Camels after tallying 15 points on six goals and three assists in his rookie campaign. 2015 All-Big South selection Josh Signey assisted on a team-high five goals and also returns for his sophomore campaign. Sam Butts is also back for CU after appearing in all 19 matches last season in forward and midfield positions.
Campbell returns every defensive starter and key reserve from last season’s squad. Daniel Mukuna, a 2015 All-Big South selection, and Matt Martinez return to anchor the back line after each played nearly every minute of action last year. CU allowed just 1.56 goals per game in Big South play and produced three shutouts overall.
In goal, the Camels return junior Matt Mozynski who started 13 games in net last season. He finished with an overall save percentage of .582 with 46 stops. Also back is sophomore Jeff Kennedy, who made five starts in 2015 and finished with a 4-1 record, all in Big South play. He compiled a 1.55 goals against average and a .742 save percentage.
Radford was selected as the league favorite with seven first place votes and 72 total points. High Point was tabbed second followed by defending Big South champions Winthrop, who also tallied a first place vote. Campbell came in fourth with 55 total points, just one point behind the Eagles.
Liberty slotted in at five followed by Longwood at six, who received a first place vote. UNC Asheville, Gardner-Webb and Presbyterian rounded out the poll in seventh through ninth respectively. Radford’s Sivert Daehlie was named the Big South Preseason Attacking Player of the Year while the Highlanders’ Jo Vetle Rimstad was tabbed as Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
The Camels open the 2016 campaign with a pair of home exhibitions starting on August 17th against Elon. The regular season kicks off August 26th against traditional in-state rival UNC Wilmington, the first of 10 contests at the Eakes Athletic Complex. It’s the largest home slate since the 2003 season.