All Bring Strong Credentials To New Haven
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Head coach Brian Tompkins will welcome seven freshmen to the Yale men's soccer program this fall.
"The Yale Soccer Class of 2016 features a group of outstanding student athletes and is a reflection of our desire to enhance and fortify the squad in order to continue the positive momentum of the 2011 season," Tompkins said. "We have added offensive pace and finishing ability and I am excited about the versatility that the attacking players will bring. We have also reinforced defensively, and the newcomers will improve the squad by providing all-important depth and competition at all positions."
Here is a closer look at the Class of 2016:
Trumbull High School
Before Yale: NSCAA All-New England selection as a senior at Trumbull High School… Earned all-league and all-state recognition as well… Holds the school's single-season assist record… Also ran track and holds five school records… Helped the Trumbull soccer team to the 2011 league title and a berth in the Class LL state final… Played club soccer for Beachside FC, a four-time State Cup champion and the 2010 Region 1 finalist.
Personal: TOPSoccer volunteer… Twin brother will also be attending Yale.
Why Yale? "From the time I visited campus and was introduced to the atmosphere at Yale, I knew that it was the right place for me. The coaches, players and students at Yale make you feel extremely comfortable, and I look forward to challenging myself to meet the high expectations that both the school and the team demand."
Los Angeles, Calif.
Harvard-Westlake High School
Before Yale: Two-time All-Mission League selection at Harvard-Westlake High School… Recipient of the team's most consistent player award as a senior and the captain's award in his junior year… Helped lead Harvard-Westlake to the state finals as a sophomore and a second-place league finish as a senior… Played club soccer for Galaxy Banditz Premier.
Personal: Helped organize a visit by Harvard-Westlake to a Los Angeles hospital for children with cancer.
Why Yale? "The students and players are all interesting and talented, and the soccer program is strong. I look forward to fighting for the Ivy League championship."
Canton High School
Before Yale: Earned CSCA all-state honors as a senior at Canton High School… Selected to play in the Connecticut Senior Bowl… Named team most valuable player… Two-time all-conference selection… Served as team captain as junior and senior… Four-year varsity letterwinner… Played for SoccerPlus CT club team… Was a two-year team captain… Helped team win Connecticut Premier Division 1 championship in 2009 and the PDA College Showcase in 2010… Also played baseball.
Personal: 2011 CIAC Male Scholar-Athlete of Year… Connecticut Winter Special Olympics volunteer… Canton Youth Soccer volunteer.
Why Yale? "In the end, I chose Yale because it offers me the chance to attend one of the world's most prestigious universities, while still staying fairly close to home."
Buckingham Browne & Nichols
Before Yale: Independent School League Defensive Player of the Year as a senior Buckingham Browne & Nichols… All-league selection… Team captain in his senior year… Helped lead BB&N to the ISL title as a sophomore and the semifinals of the New England championship... Played club soccer for FC Stars and FC Boston Blast… Helped the Blast to three Massachusetts State Cups and a berth in the under-16 nationals… Helped FC Stars to regional finals.
Personal: Volunteered at Access Sport America, assisting children and adults with mental and physical disabilities work out and play sports.
Why Yale? "Yale is an institution with unbelievable academics, a competitive soccer program, an awesome coaching staff and a welcoming student body. There is no other place I'd rather call home for the next four years of my life."
The Woodlands, Texas
College Park High School
Before Yale: Played exclusively with the Texas Rush of the US Soccer Development Academy last year… Started 30 games for the Rush and scored four goals… Helped Rush win the 2010 Disney Showcase and the USSF U16 Academy Texas Division title in 2010-11… Four-year team captain for the Rush… Played three years for College Park High School… Two-time all-district selection.
Personal: National Charity Roundtable active member since 2006… Youth soccer referee.
Why Yale? "Yale not only offers the fantastic education that I am looking for but also the intense soccer atmosphere that only a team on the rise to the top could provide."
Santa Barbara, Calif.
Before Yale: Holds the Cate School record for goals in a season (38) and goals in a career (101)… 2011 Santa Barbara Player of the Year… Named to ESPN Rise All-California Best Eleven team… Helped lead Case to back-to-back CIF championships in his junior and senior seasons and four league championships… Played with the Cal-South Olympic Development team… Played for the Santa Barbara Soccer Club, was team captain and leading scorer for five years… Also played for USSDA Irvine Strikers, who played in the Milk Cup in Northern Ireland and beat the Tottenham and Bolton Youth teams.
Personal: Tutored students in Ghana at the Right To Dream Academy, which is a school founded to provide and education to the best young soccer players in Ghana.
Why Yale? "Once I visited and got a feel for what life at Yale was like I knew that I wanted to spend my college years there."
The Taft School
Before Yale: Western New England Prep School soccer all star at The Taft School… Earned All-Founders League recognition… Team captain… Led the team in scoring with 17 goals in 16 games… 17 goals tied for the second most in school history… Taft reached the Founders League semifinals for the first time in school history.
Why Yale? "I chose Yale because it is the perfect place to excel in both academics and soccer."
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity