CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- After finishing tied for third in the conference last season, the Simpson men's soccer team is picked fourth in the American Rivers Conference Coaches' Preseason Poll, announced on Tuesday by the league.
Head coach Rick Isaacson returns 10 starters from last year's squad and also brings back 24 letterwinners from a team that went 11-6-2 and 5-2-1 in the A-R-C. The Storm are bringing back a lot of fire power on offense as seven of their top-scorers return; the group combined for 35 of the team's 47 goals from a year ago.
Out of the large group that return, four were recognized by the conference last season. Tanner Alderson, Baraka Ellie and Trevor Fuccio were all-conference selections, while Darius Doswell was honorable mention. Alderson was first in the conference in shots (67) and shots per game (3.53), and Ellie led in assists (8) and assists per game (.421).
Since Isaacson took over in 2011, Simpson has averaged 11.5 wins per season and have qualified for the conference tournament in all eight seasons, while reaching the semifinals four of those years.
The Storm begin the 2019 campaign Aug. 30 at Augustana and open up their home slate on Sept. 1 against Minnesota Morris at 1 p.m.
2019 American Rivers Conference Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches' Poll
1. Loras (13-6-0, 7-1-0)
2. Luther (19-4-1, 6-1-1)
3. Wartburg (9-7-3, 5-2-1)
4. Simpson (11-6-2, 5-2-1)
5. Central (9-9, 5-3)
6. Nebraska Wesleyan (8-8-1, 3-5)
7. Dubuque (4-12, 2-6)
8. Coe (0-14-1, 0-8)
9. Buena Vista (1-16-1, 1-6-1)