After their weekend sweep of Ivy League opponents Princeton and Penn, Georgetown has risen to the #9 spot in the national college soccer rankings, moving up three spots from #12 in last week’s polls.
Head Coach Brian Wiese’s team is 7-0-1 to start its 2012 campaign, a record that marks the best start in the program’s long history.
The sole draw came two weekends ago at Wisconsin, when senior midfielder Ian Christianson scored in the 68th minute to erase GU’s early deficit. The game-winner would just manage to elude the Hoyas over the course the final 22 minutes, however, and Coach Wiese told me on Sunday after the Penn win that that UW tie actually still stings a bit for his guys. No joke.
The Blue and Gray, who came into the season unranked, have experienced something of a meteoric rise in the national collegiate soccer consciousness during their eight-game undefeated streak. First entering the rankings at #21 after wins over Virginia and Florida Gulf Coast, their play thus far might lead one to wonder what the voters’ thought process was in leaving them off their initial ballots in the first place.
Last year’s offensive pieces are all back, after all, with Christianson, Steve Neumann, and Andy Riemer–who had a hat trick on Sunday–all returning for another go-round. The addition of freshman striker Brandon Allen to the lineup has then made this team only more dangerous in the final third.
Defensively, the Hoyas had star centerback Tommy Muller coming back, but the senior’s leg injury has limited his minutes so far, which has led to freshman Cole Seiler stepping up in a major way. Oh, and preseason Big East Defensive Player of the Year Jimmy Nealis patrols the left side of the defense. A lot to like here, clearly.
We’ll get a better idea in the weeks to come, though, of what this Georgetown team is truly capable of, as Big East play is set to get underway.
Rutgers is first on deck for the Blue and Gray, with kickoff set for 1 p.m. on Saturday at North Kehoe; be sure to check out my full preview of that game in Friday’s edition of The Hoya.