2018 MEC Men's soccer Poll

Fresh off the program's first national championship, the University of Charleston is the preseason favorite to win the 2018 Mountain East Conference Men's Soccer title.

Gabriel Cabral

The Golden Eagles have won four-straight regular season titles, but will have to replace several key components from last year's championship, including the conference's all-time leader in points Will Roberts. UC will also be rebuilding a bit in the back with a new goalkeeper and the departure of the 2017 MEC Defensive Player of the Year, Thomas Vancaeyezeele, but return first team All-MEC defender Armando Tikvic. UC also brings back all-conference honorees Ettore Ballestracci, Gabriel Cabral and Williams N'Dah to make a run at another title.

Luca Falconieri (WVWC) and Guilherme Gloria Albuquerque (NDC).

Notre Dame was picked second in the poll with 40 points and one first-place vote. The Falcons bring back several key players from last year's team including first team All-MEC selection Paolo Termine as well as Lewis Norvock, Reece Daly and Guilherme Gloria Albquerque. Goalkeeper Daniele De Angelis also returns to help anchor the NDC defense.

West Virginia Wesleyan was the only team to defeat Charleston last year downing the Golden Eagles in the MEC Tournament final, 2-1, and the Bobcats come into the season picked third in the preseason poll. The Bobcats graduated all four of their first team All-MEC selections from last year, including the conference's leading scorer last year in Juwon Akintunde. Midfielders Matthew Bentley and Luca Falconieri will be called upon to lead WVWC this fall.

Urbana was picked to finish fourth in the poll, followed by Concord. The Blue Knights earned the fourth spot in the MEC Tournament last season and posted a 10-7-0 record on the year. UU will be led by defender Zach Poff and midfielder Jasminko Dizdarevic. Concord fielded a young and talented team last year and brings back forward Sam Ashton, Xander Bailey and Moulay Hassani.

West Liberty and Wheeling Jesuit tied for sixth in the poll with 19 points. The Hilltoppers are in their first year as a varsity program. Shepherd rounded out the poll in eighth.

The 2018 season begins on Thursday, Aug. 30 with the following matchups:

  • Ohio Dominican at Urbana
  • Gannon at Notre Dame
  • Bloomsburg at Shepherd
  • Concord at King
  • Seton Hill at Wheeling Jesuit
  • California (Pa.) West Virginia Wesleyan
  • Saginaw Valley State at Charleston

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