Three Men's Soccer Players Tabbed Preseason All-BIG EAST

Senior co-captain Bryan Ciesiulka was one of four unanimous selections to the 2013 Preseason All-BIG EAST Men's Soccer Team

Aug 13, 2013

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MILWAUKEE - Three members of Marquette University men's soccer, including two underclassmen, were named to the Preseason All-BIG EAST Team announced Tuesday. Midfielder Bryan Ciesiulka, forward C. Nortey and defender Axel Sjoberg were honored by the league's coaches. Sjoberg was also tabbed preseason co-Defensive Player of the Year.

In addition, the 2013 BIG EAST Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches' Poll was released. The Golden Eagles, who return nine starters from a 2012 squad that tied a single-season school record for wins with a 16-4-1 overall mark, were picked to finish third overall behind Georgetown and Creighton, respectively.

Sjoberg, a redshirt sophomore, will again anchor a backline that, together with returning goalkeeper Charlie Lyon, posted 10 shutouts last season. The 6-foot-7 central defender was second on the team in goals (8) and was named to the 2012 All-BIG EAST Second Team along with Ciesiulka, who was one of four unanimous preseason all-conference selections.

Ciesiulka is the program's active career leader in points (33) and assists (5) heading into his senior year. That includes a single-season career-high nine points, five assists and two game-winning goals in 2012. The MU co-captain, who also earned CoSIDA Academic All-America Second Team accolades, helped the Golden Eagles reach the NCAA tournament for the first time in 15 years, orchestrating one of the most dynamic offensive attacks in the nation a season ago.

Nortey received a medical redshirt in 2012 as Marquette climbed as high as No. 2 in the national polls and eventually earned the No. 7 overall seed and a first-round bye in the NCAA Division I Men's Soccer Championship. Nortey was the Golden Eagles' leading scoring with 20 points -- including a team-best nine goals -- as a freshman in 2011, earning BIG EAST All-Rookie Team honors.

While Nortey was busy over the summer returning to form, Ciesiulka and Sjoberg continued to showcase their talents in the Premier Development League. Sjoberg (Thunder Bay Chill) was named to the 11-person All-PDL Team and joined Ciesiulka (Chicago Fire) on the PDL All-Central Conference Team.

Ciesiulka, Sjoberg and Lyon were also recognized in the "Top 100 Men's College Soccer Player Rankings," which was also released Tuesday. Ciesiulka was ranked No. 20, followed by Sjoberg (No. 25) and Lyon (No. 28).

In other news, Marquette landed in the No. 12 spot of the NSCAA/Continental Tire Preseason Rankings, which had five BIG EAST teams in the top 25 or receiving votes. MU is ranked No. 8 in the College Soccer News Preseason Top 30 National Poll announced earlier this summer.

Marquette's first training session of the 2013 season will be held Wednesday morning at Valley Fields. The Golden Eagles will take part in their annual Fan Fest celebration on Friday (gates open at 4:30 p.m. CT) before hosting Wright State on Saturday night in the team's first exhibition contest of the campaign.

MU will play defending national champion and preseason No. 1 Indiana in the Shindigz National Soccer Festival in Fort Wayne, Ind. next Thursday, Aug. 22 before opening the regular season Aug. 30 with the 41st annual Milwaukee Cup match against the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee at the Panthers' Engelmann Field.

2013 BIG EAST Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches' Poll
1. Georgetown (75) - 79
2. Creighton (3) - 75
3. Marquette - 63
4. St. John's - 59
5. Xavier - 49
6. Villanova - 42
7. Providence - 25
8. Butler - 24
9. Seton Hall - 18
10. DePaul - 17

2013 BIG EAST Men's Soccer Preseason All-BIG EAST Team
Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: Steve Neumann, Georgetown
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Axel Sjoberg, Marquette, and Tim Parker, St. John's
Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year: Rafael Diaz, St. John's

Forwards *Brandon Allen, So., Georgetown
*Steve Neumann, Sr., Georgetown
C. Nortey, So., Marquette
George Velasquez, Sr., Seton Hall
Dylan Renna, Sr., Villanova

Timo Pitter, So., Creighton
* Bryan Ciesiulka, Sr., Marquette
Oscar Umar, Jr., Villanova
Matt Walker, Sr., Xavier

Eric Miller, Jr., Creighton
Axel Sjoberg, So., Marquette
*Tim Parker, So., St. John's
Nick Hagglund, Sr., Xavier

Rafael Diaz, So., St. John's

*denotes unanimous selection
Note: Because of a tie in the voting, a position at forward was added. There was a tie for Defensive Player of the Year.




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