Men’s soccer signs 10 new recruits

Andrew Clausen

In the middle of their spring exhibition season, the Appalachian State men’s soccer team is already preparing to start the 2013-14 season with plenty of new recruits.

Ten recruits were signed this month to play as Mountaineers next fall.

The team finished strong last season (8-7-4, 2-3-2 Southern Conference) and made it to the semifinals before losing in a two-overtime battle with Wofford.

App State is losing seven seniors this year, and head coach Matt Nelson understands the challenge.

“It’s always difficult to fill the senior shoes because there’s so much experience,” Nelson said. “Freshmen coming in aren’t used to that level.”

Having 10 new recruits gives the team a lot to learn and work with, so starting practices months in advance gives the Mountaineers a competitive edge for next season.

The coaches have also managed to recruit close to Boone, with seven of the 10 recruits from North Carolina, one transfer, one from out of the country and one from Texas.

“It’s tough for them but I think the players we have coming in are definitely good enough to step into those shoes,” Nelson said.

Nelson, who was named SoCon Coach of the Year in 2012, isn’t the only one who is optimistic. With teamwork and chemistry remaining a huge part of team’s success, captain Harrison Delbridge is hopeful the new Mountaineers will only make that stronger.

“Even the players coming in, if they aren’t starting, they’re all going to put pressure on the players we have now because they’re all going to be strong players coming in,” Delbridge said. “The group that we have now is going to have to play really well to start over some of the strong players we have coming in next year.”

After making it to the semifinals in SoCon tournaments two years in a row, App State will look to continue the same success next year, even with new faces.

Story: JESS LYONS, Intern Sports Reporter