Aug. 6, 2012
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Notre Dame seniors Ryan Finley (F) and Dillon Powers (M) have been named to the 2012 Preseason All-BIG EAST Men’s Soccer Team in a vote by the league’s head coaches. The Fighting Irish duo was among 15 players named to the squad.
The coaches picked Notre Dame to finish second in the BIG EAST Blue Division, while Connecticut was tabbed to win the division. Georgetown was selected to finish third followed in order by Marquette, Providence, Seton Hall and Pittsburgh. Connecticut received 13 first-place votes among the seven Blue Division squads, while Notre Dame and Georgetown both garnered one first-place nod.
St. John’s was selected to win the eight-team Red Division. The league’s 15 head coaches were not permitted to vote for their own squads.
Finley (Lumberton, N.J./Rancocas Valley/Duke) led Notre Dame in both goals (7) and points (16) last season, which was his first with the Irish after transferring from Duke. He was named second team all-BIG EAST in addition to garnering third-team all-Great Lakes Region honors.
Powers (Plano, Texas/Plano Senior) started all 18 matches last season and tallied six points on one goal and four assists. He earned all-BIG EAST second-team accolades for the second straight season and also was named to the all-Great Lakes Region second team. Powers, a two-time team captain, was named a 2011 National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Scholar All-American.
Connecticut junior forward Mamadou Diouf was selected as BIG EAST Preseason Offensive Player of the Year. Louisville’s Andrew Farrell, a junior, and Georgetown senior Jimmy Nealis earned Preseason Co-Defensive Players of the Year, while Andre Blake, a sophomore from Connecticut, was a unanimous selection as BIG EAST Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year.
The Fighting Irish went 9-5-4 in 2011 and finished tied for fourth in the BIG EAST Blue Division with a 5-3-1 league mark. The Irish saw their season come to an end with a 1-0 setback to Villanova in the first round of the BIG EAST Championship.
Notre Dame opens its 2012 exhibition slate Sunday at Northern Illinois. The Fighting Irish will play host to Duke on Aug. 25 in the regular-season opener.