By Cody Prawicka
After the 2011 season incident and now the 2012 season, the college’s men’s soccer team is now back on their feet as returning champs.
The team ended their 2012 season on October 11th with a phenomenal record of 14 wins and only two losses, which put them in the standing for the Regional Championship. In the quarter finals of the Regionals the Sharks went head to head with Dutchess Community College. In the first half of the game the Sharks put themselves in the lead with two goals made by Frankie Guzman; that was assisted by Andre Brown, and Cody Kaczetow; that was assisted by Frankie Guzman. In the second half the Sharks finished Dutchess Community College off with one last goal scored by Justin O’Connor with the assist by Tyrell Ippolitto, ending the game with a shut out of 3-0.
A huge fan and student of the college’s soccer team William Merschoff had this to say about the team’s winnings, ” All I can say is this was a crazy story, one year the team is basically taken out of the running to defend their championship thanks to a paperwork error, and now the next season they come back stronger than ever and are on their way back to the top, to me it’s very inspirational, and I’m very happy to have the rightful champions defend their title without any accidents.”
The next game for the soccer team takes place on October 24th and it is the Regional Semi-Final game against Hostos Community College. The Sharks previously faced Hostos earlier in October and defeated them 4-0, one of the college’s students and all around soccer fanatic Michael Steinmann gives his thoughts and predictions on the upcoming game, “I think that Suffolk will dominate this game completely. Not to be too arrogant, but we took care of Hostos pretty easily so I don’t have any doubt that it will be done again.” Steinmann also tried out for the college’s soccer team over the summer but failed to make the team; “I used to play soccer for my high school and I thought I was pretty good, but when I walked onto the field and saw these guys play I knew I didn’t have a chance. They are all truly incredible athletes and I give them my best wishes in the Regional Championship.”
The October 24th game will start at 2 P.M. at the Grant Campus. This story that the soccer team has been through for the past two years is nothing short of a motivational and touching turn of events. In 2010 they won the National Championships and were such a dominant force in the sport; however in the early 2011 season a fellow team mate Rafael Rajo lost his life at the age of 21 in an automobile accident. On top of that due to some paperwork errors by the hands of the athletic department, the team had to forfeit a total of eight games which destroyed any chance of them defending their title that year. Now in the 2012 season it seems that they are back on the right path with nothing in their way.
Another soccer buff and student of the college, Brett Goldberg; gives his thoughts on what he would feel if the team won regional’s and made it back into the national spotlight. “If the Sharks made it back, after what happened last season, to the National Championship, it’ll be a huge upset. After everything they have been through, losing a beloved and valuable team mate, to being unjustly forfeited in most of their matches, this would be one of the biggest comebacks I have ever seen in sports. Of course nothing can be said for sure now, but the way it looks now is that the sharks have their eye on the National Championship again.
One thing is for certain, nothing is standing in the Sharks way for that National Championship, so come support the college’s men’s soccer team as they try and make their run towards national gold for the second time in the past two years.