AUSTINTOWN, Ohio – The Capital University men's soccer team looks to improve on a 7-1-1 conference record. Despite last season's conference record, in the preseason poll, the Crusaders are predicted to finish the regular season in third.
Last season Capital finished the regular season with an overall record of 9-9-1. Behind a 7-1-1 record in conference play the Crusaders went into the OAC Tournament as the No. 2 seed. Cap fell in the conference semifinals to John Carroll University, 3-2. When asked about improving on a 7-1-1 conference record Head Coach Alan Yost said, "improving on 7-1-1 is difficult but there are some teams we know we can't drop points to. There are teams that are rivals that we need to beat."
Ohio Northern University looks to defend its regular-season title as well as its OAC Tournament title. Ohio Northern sits at the top of the conference preseason rankings, followed by OAC Tournament runners-up John Carroll.
Marietta College, Heidelberg University and Baldwin Wallace University finish out the top six respectively.
Capital returns 21 letter winners from last season. Of those 21 players, six were All-OAC. Jacob Pulliam (Westerville, Ohio) heads the list after he received First Team All-OAC honors. A.G. Basiakos (Hilliard, Ohio) and Calvin Saunders (Winston Salem, N.C.) were named Second Team All-OAC. Josh McDaniel (Cincinnati, Ohio), Chewy Gordon (Westerville, Ohio) and Justin Niswonger (Centerville, Ohio) earned conference honorable mention.
The Crusaders will open their season on the road at the Fred Myers Invitational at Ohio Wesleyan University. Capital will face Calvin College on Friday, Sept. 2, at 4:30 p.m. The first home match will be against Finlandia University on Sunday, Sept. 9, at 7 p.m.