Vermont's O'Brien, Binghamton's Halberg Net Men's Soccer Weekly Accolades

Release: 09/13/2010
Connor O'Brien scored twice in as many games last week to lead Vermont to the Smith Barney Classic title.
Connor O'Brien scored twice in as many games last week to lead Vermont to the Smith Barney Classic title.
Courtesy: America East Communications

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- University of Vermont's Connor O’Brien (Richmond, Vt./Mt. Mansfield) helped his team extend its win streak to three games and has been named America East men's soccer Player of the Week for his efforts. Binghamton University's Luke Halberg (Norwich, N.Y./Velley Heights Christian Acad.) accomplished something no Bearcat freshman had done in nearly six years to take home Rookie of the Week honors. The awards for the week ending Sept. 12 were announced Monday afternoon.

O'Brien earned Offensive MVP honors at the Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Nike Fall Classic, which Vermont won for the ninth time in 20 years. A senior back/midfielder, O’Brien scored in both Vermont victories, a 4-0 rout over Presbyterian Friday and a 2-1 win over Cornell Sunday. He tallied UVM’s second goal, which came in the 39th minute, in the win over the Pale Hose and followed with the game-winner in the 65th minute against the Big Red. O’Brien, whose five points are tied for seventh among league leaders, also helped hold opponents to just one goal on the weekend.

Halberg nearly led the Bearcats to an upset over nationally-ranked Penn State Sunday. The freshman forward scored his first two career goals in Binghamton’s 4-3 loss to the No. 15/11 Nittany Lions. With his team trailing 2-0 in the first half, Halberg brought the Bearcats to within one with a score in the 28th minute. His second goal tied the contest at 3-3 with 21 minutes remaining. Halberg’s two-goal performance was Binghamton’s first by a freshman since Adam Chavez accomplished the feat in 2004.

Team Notes
Albany (2-2)
dropped both of its home matches this past week … The Great Danes fell to NJIT, 4-1, on Sept. 8 and to Colgate, 1-0, on Sept. 12 … UAlbany has relied on a balanced attack on the offensive end, as eight players have combined to notch five goals and four assists in the three matches … Midfielder Anthony DeSalvo (Cicero, N.Y./Cicero-North Syracuse), who netted his first career goal against NJIT, leads the team in scoring with three points ... Forward Bo Jelovac (Belgrade, Serbia/Sveti Sava School) and defender Ian Peach (South Hempstead, N.Y./South Side) punched in the eventual game-winning markers against Fairfield and St. Francis, N.Y., respectively, in the opening matches, while midfielder Milos Jankovic (Belgrade, Serbia/Secondary School of Sport) and forward Shaun Kane (Stirlingshire, Scotland/St/ Modans) have also scored for the Great Danes this season … Goalkeeper Adrian Foncette (Arima, Trinidad/Fatima) has logged in every minute this fall … He has a .793 save percentage and a 1.50 goals against average with one shutout … UAlbany concludes its four-game homestand when it hosts crosstown-rival Siena on Wednesday, Sept. 15 at 4 p.m. … The team will also travel to face Hartwick on Saturday, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m.

Binghamton (0-4-0) has faced four consecutive nationally-ranked opponents, including Ohio State (No. 11 NSCAA/No. 7 College Soccer News) and Penn State (No. 15/11) this past weekend ... Nine of the 14 Bearcat players who took the field this weekend were underclassmen, three were redshirt freshmen and two were true freshmen ... Freshman forward Luke Halberg (Norwich, N.Y./Valley Heights Christian Academy) and sophomore forward Adam Whitehead (Rochdale, England/Our Lady RC) were named to the Penn State Soccer Classic All-Tournament Team. Halberg had two goals against the Nittany Lions, while Whitehead dished out a career-high two assists. In the process, Halberg became the first Binghamton freshman to record a multiple-goal game since Adam Chavez accomplished the feat against Niagara on Sept. 18, 2004 ... The three goals scored by Binghamton against Penn State represent its highest total against a nationally-ranked opponent in its nine-year NCAA Division I history.

Boston University (3-1-1) split its two games on the road against Big East squads this past weekend, earning a 3-1 victory at Seton Hall Friday in the first-ever meeting between the two programs before dropping a 2-1 decision at No. 15 St. John’s Sunday ... Senior Ryan Shea (Boston, Mass./Hanover) had a strong performance off the bench, assisting on the game-winning goal against the Pirates and scoring a game-tying goal against the Red Storm ... Senior Aaron O’Neal (Virginia Beach, Va./Kellam) extended his streak of games with a goal to three in the Seton Hall contest and now has four scores on the year ... Senior Ben Havey (Preston, England/Cardinal Newman College (HS)) posted an assist in the game and is second on the team with six points off two goals and two assists … St. John’s snapped the Terriers’ four-game winning streak against Big East schools by taking advantage of them going a man down due to a red card three minutes later in the 52nd minute … The Terriers finished ahead in shot attempts, 21-11, but the Red Storm finished with 10 saves, including one from the defense … Redshirt freshman Brandon Briggs (Carson City, Nev./Carson) now has a 0.77 goals against average and a .826 save percentage … The Terriers will next face No. 5 Boston College on the road Friday (Sept. 17) before returning to Nickerson Field on Sunday (Sept. 19) against Brown.

Hartford (2-2-0), which failed to earn a victory in the first week of the season, kicked off week two with two straight shutout defeats over in-state rivals and Northeast Conference opponents at Alumni Stadium ... The Hawks posted a 2-0 shutout of Quinnipiac on Wednesday before registering a 1-0 win over Central Connecticut State on Saturday ... Junior transfer Jordan Bar (Centerville, Mass./Barnstable/Davidson), who made his Hartford debut in goal on Wednesday, appeared in net in both games for the Hawks ... Bar tallied three saves en route to a pair of clean sheets ... The Hawks combined to outshoot their opponents 20-13 in the past two matches ... Against Quinnipiac, junior Andrew Liapis (Manalapan, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) netted his first career goal to get the Hawks on the board in the 53rd minute and sophomore linemate James Stamopoulos (Mississagua, Ontario/Port Credit Secondary) put the game out of reach with his tally 14 minutes later ... Against Central Connecticut State, Hartford took advantage of a miscue by its opponent’s goalkeeper to get on the board ... Patrick Boucher (Cromwell, Conn./Cromwell) sent a cross to the center of the box, which was intercepted by the Blue Devils’ keeper, but dropped into the net after losing control ... Hartford hits the road to face a pair of Big East opponents, starting with St. John’s on Friday (8:30 p.m.) and concluding with Rutgers on Sunday (2:30 p.m.).

UMBC (2-2-0) dropped two road decisions, falling at Towson, 5-3, on Sept. 8, and losing a 2-0 decision at Navy on Sept. 11 ... Senior midfielder Levi Houapeu (Germantown, Md./Watkins Mill) leads UMBC with nine points (4g, 1a) on the season... Junior attackers Nirav Kadam (Germantown, Md./Northwest/UNCG) and Andrew Bulls (Millersville, Md./McDonogh) each have six points through three games ... The two-goal effort by Houapeu against Towson was the fourth multi-goal game of his career and his 11th multiple-point effort, all coming in the past two seasons (23 games)... He now has 23 career goals, 16 assists for 62 points... Bulls, who scored his first goal of the season against the Tigers, racked up four assists in the first two games of the campaign and now has 65 career points (24-17-65), which ranks 10th on UMBC’s all-time scoring list. His next goal will be his 25th and he will join 10 other Retrievers with 25 or more career goals ... Due to an injury suffered in the first half at Towson on Wednesday, senior captain John Paul Waraksa (Media, Pa./Strath Haven) saw his streak of 22 consecutive starts in games he had dressed for come to an end. The outstanding defensive midfielder did not appear in the contest at Navy ... UMBC had won 13 consecutive games in the month of September, dating back to the 2008 season ... Ironically, the last September loss by UMBC also occurred at Towson (2-1) on Sept. 17, 2008 ... The Retrievers have won 12 in a row at home in September, dating back to a draw with James Madison in the 2007 campaign ... UMBC hosts La Salle on Wednesday evening under the lights at UMBC Stadium and travels to Mount St. Mary’s for an afternoon contest on Sept. 18.

New Hampshire (2-0-2) preserved its four-game unbeaten streak with a win and a tie over the weekend at the Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Nike Fall Classic at Centennial Field … Brad Hilton (Merrimack, N.H./Merrimack) scored a game-winning goal at 109:44 to propel the ‘Cats to a 2-1 victory over Presbyterian College in double-overtime Sunday afternoon in the final day of play at the tournament … For his impressive performance throughout the weekend, Hilton was named to the All-Tournament team, along with sophomores Josh Bronner (Belchertown, Mass./Belchertown) and Jordan Thomas (Mohnton, Pa./Governor Mifflin) … Thomas scored UNH’s first goal of the contest when he picked up a rebound and flicked the ball into the net, giving the Wildcats the early 1-0 advantage in 41st minute of the action … Robert Palumbo (Kingston, N.H./Sanborn Regional) was credited with the assist … New Hampshire battled back to earn a 1-1 draw against Cornell University in double-overtime Friday afternoon … Senior back Joe Corsello (York, Maine/York) scored UNH’s lone goal in the 73rd minute on a one-timer set up by Bronner and Hilton that found its way into the low corner of the net … After his impressive weekend, Hilton leads the ‘Cats with three total points on a goal and an assist … Robert Palumbo leads the team in assists with two … Thomas leads the squad with 13 shots … New Hampshire returns to action on Wednesday, Sept. 22 when the ‘Cats return home to take on Bryant University at 7 p.m. at Bremner Field.

Stony Brook (2-5-0) went 1-2-0 on the week, falling to South Florida and Holy Cross before shutting out Dartmouth, a team that was receiving votes in this week’s NSCAA/ National Rankings ... Sophomore Berian Gobeil (Montreal, Quebec/Champlain College-Saint Lambert) scored the Seawolves’ lone goal of the week, a diving header that served as the game-winner to beat the Big Green. It was Gobeil’s first goal of the season and sixth of his career. He finished second on the team in scoring last season ... Sophomore keepers Stefan Manz (Bronx, N.Y./Fordham Prep) and Danny Bonomini (Holbrook, N.Y./Sachem East) continue to split time in net ... Bonomini started against USF and then relieved Manz during the Holy Cross match ... Manz recorded a shutout against Dartmouth with four saves, his second shutout of the season ... Stony Brook begins a stretch of four consecutive home matches at LaValle Stadium, beginning this weekend against Central Connecticut State, the SBU home opener, and Bryant. The Seawolves went 5-3-1 at home last season.

Vermont (4-1-0) improved to 4-1 on the season with a 4-0 victory over Presbyterian and a 2-1 win over Cornell this week ... The Catamounts won their own Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Nike Fall Classic with the 2-0 mark ... Connor O’Brien (Richmond, Vt./Mt. Mansfield) scored twice, including the game-winner versus the Big Red, to claim the tournament’s offensive MVP honor ... Yannick Lewis (Toronto, Ontario/Bramalea Secondary) scored his first goal of the season in the win over Cornell and was named the tournament’s defensive MVP ... Senior Kyle Luetkehans (LaGrange, Ill./Lyons Township) joined the duo on the all-tournament team ... Junior forward Nick O’Neill (Peoria, Ill./Peoria Notre Dame) continued his offensive onslaught, scoring twice and adding an assist in the two games ... He potted a pair of goals in the win over Presbyterian and handed out an assist against Cornell ... He leads the team in scoring with 10 points (4 gls, 2 ast) in five games ... Vermont won its own tournament for the ninth time in the 20-year history of the event and the first since 2008 ... Sophomore David Ramada picked up his first collegiate victory in his second career start in the 2-1 win over Cornell ... UVM returns to action Friday and Sunday at the Colgate Raider Adidas Classic in Hamilton, N.Y. ... Vermont takes on Colgate on Friday at 7:30 p.m. and then faces Lafayette at 12 p.m. on Sunday.