UK Soccer Picked as C-USA Preseason Favorite

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Defending Conference USA regular-season champion Kentucky was selected as the conference coaches’ preseason favorite to win the league men’s soccer title in 2016. Wildcat senior midfielder Napo Matsoso was voted the Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, the C-USA office announced on Wednesday.

Matsoso is rated as one of the top seniors in the nation this season as he has proven to be an elite attacking player in his three previous seasons at UK. A season ago he earned All-Conference USA first-team honors for the second consecutive year. 

Matsoso started 15 games in midfield, leading the team with 14 points on four goals, three of which were game-winners, and six assists. 

He is joined on the annual preseason squad by teammates Stefan Stojkovic, and Jordan Wilson, who anchored a Wildcat back line that boasted a shutout percentage of 0.53 (11th, NCAA) and a team goals-against average of 0.66 (9th, NCAA) in 2015.

Kentucky won the Conference USA Regular Season title for the first time in 2015, going undefeated in the league while conceding just one goal during that stretch.

The Wildcats lost two 2015 regular starters: All-America goalkeeper Callum Irving and Kristoffer Tollefsen to graduation.

Last season UK made the NCAA Tournament for the second year in a row, and third of head coach Johan Cedergren's four-year tenure.

2016 PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE USA TEAM

 Name

School

Year

Pos.

Hometown

Brandt Bronico

Charlotte

Sr.

MF

High Point, North Carolina

Luis Betancur

FIU

Sr.

F

Parkland, Florida

Marvin Hezel

FIU

Sr.

D

Waldshut, Germany

Napo Matsoso

Kentucky

Sr.

MF

Louisville, Kentucky

Stefan Stojkovic

Kentucky

Jr.

F

Halmsted, Sweden

Jordan Wilson 

Kentucky

Sr.

D

Auchterarder, Scotland

Niko Hansen

New Mexico

Sr.

F

Sacramento, California

Chris Wehan

New Mexico

Sr.

MF

Laguna Niguel, California

Alex Tiesenhausen

Old Dominion

Sr.

GK

Graz, Austria

Danny Deakin

South Carolina

Sr.

MF

Sheffield, England

Koty Millard

South Carolina

Sr.

D

Columbia, South Carolina

 

2016 C-USA PRESEASON OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Napo Matsoso, Kentucky, Sr., MF

2016 C-USA PRESEASON DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Marvin Hezel, FIU, Sr., D

2016 C-USA PRESEASON POLL
(as selected by C-USA coaches)
1.    Kentucky
2.    Charlotte
3.    FIU
4t.   New Mexico
       South Carolina
6.    Old Dominion
7.    UAB
8.    Marshall
9.    Florida Atlantic

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