August 14, 2008

Spartans Open Season at #5

YORK, PA - The York College men’s soccer team will begin the 2008 campaign among the nation’s best. The Spartans hold the #5 ranking according to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, which bases their preseason rankings on the previous year’s finish. This is the second consecutive year that the green and white enter the season as the country’s fifth-best squad.

“This is nice to be recognized early, but we all know the rankings only mean something at the end of the season," Spartan head coach Mark Ludwig said. "Hopefully we can continue to establish a tradition of excellence this season with the York College men’s soccer program.”

The Spartans, who have made three consecutive trips to the NCAA tournament including appearances in back-to-back Elite Eights, know that they have a tough road ahead if they want to remain among the top squads in the country.

“We have a tough schedule in front of us and that is a good thing,” Ludwig said. “We play against five teams that are listed among the NSCAA’s top-25, plus a number of other quality schools. Our team has to be ready for a tough match every time we play.”

Even with the one of the most difficult schedules in all of Division III, York still looks to have a strong season. The Spartans return a trio of All-Americans in senior Evan Scheffey (Lititz, Pa./Warwick), senior Chris Ports (John Carroll), and junior Jon Ports (Baltimore, Md./McDonogh), while All-Capital Athletic Conference goalkeeper Kyle Marks (Yardley, Pa./Pennsbury) embarks upon his senior campaign. A quality mix of veterans combined with an influx of talented newcomers could result in another successful year for the Spartans.

“I like the way the roster looks for this season,” Ludwig said. “Even so, each game this year will be challenging and we will look to improve each day. If we can accomplish this, the postseason has a chance to be special.”

York opens the 2008 campaign on August 29 against #14 Virginia Wesleyan in the VCAM/Christopher Newport Classic in Newport News, Va.