MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - West Virginia University men’s soccer coach Marlon LeBlanc announced the addition of eight student-athletes for the 2014 season.
“We’re pleased with the group that we are bringing in. A lot of these guys have played at a high level and are important players within their Academy teams. We happen to think that they are better than how they read on paper, so if they read well on paper, then we believe they are better. This group has a pretty bright future ahead of them.”
All eight come from the high school ranks and the group includes four four-star TopDrawerSoccer recruits. The signees include Jad Arlsan (Roswell, Ga.), Alec Boerner (Midlothian, Va.), Colin Hester (Camp Hill, Pa.), Jacob Icolari (Denver, Colo.), Conner Owens (Richmond, Va.), Joey Piatczyc (Lee’s Summitt, Mo.), Austin Stout (Jamison, Pa.) and Louis Thomas (Houston, Texas).
Jad Arslan, MF, 5-6, 140, Roswell, Ga., Roswell HS/Georgia United Academy
Plays for coach Tony Annan with Georgia United Academy … tied for the team lead with five goals in 14 games, 13 starts, thus far in 2013-14 … scored a team-leading 14 goals during the 2012-13 season … four-year Georgia ODP and Region III starter (2008-11) … 2011 state cup finalist … 2011 Disney Showcase Champion and 2010 Disney Showcase finalist … 2010 Southeast Region III starter … played two seasons (2011-12) for coach Billy Viger at Roswell High … scored a team-leading 10 goals in 2012, earning team MVP honors … four-star recruit according to TopDrawerSoccer … ranked No. 27 recruit in the South Atlantic region by TopDrawerSoccer … ranked No. 99 played in the Class of 2014 by CollegeSoccerNews.
LeBlanc on Arslan: Jad is a prototypical No. 10 player that has soccer sense and soccer savvy that cannot be taught. He knows how to break players down on and off the ball and can score goals coming from midfield. He is interchangeable because of his soccer IQ and will have the ability to make an instant impact.
Alec Boerner, GK, 6-3, 175, Midlothian, Va., James River HS/FC Richmond
Team captain for coach Dave Amsler with FC Richmond … member of the Virginia ODP and Region I teams … played in the Dallas Cup as a member of the VCCL Select Team … two-time team MVP for coach Forsan Radwan at James River High … two-time all-district first team, all-region first team as a junior and all-region honorable mention as a sophomore.
LeBlanc on Boerner: Alec is a long and athletic goalkeeper who covers his box very well. He is a kid who came through our Winter Prep Academy and we had the opportunity to work with him about a year ago. We really like Alec and think he has a bright future ahead of him.
Colin Hester, F, 5-10, 155, Camp Hill, Pa., Camp Hill HS/PA Classics Academy
Plays for coach Steve Klein with PA Classics Academy … played in 23 games with 11 starts during the 2012-13 season … previously spent two seasons with coach Alan Mezger at FC Delco Academy … 2011 Philadelphia Union SUM Cup pool player … member of the Pennsylvania ODP First Team from 2007-09 … played three seasons for coach Justin Shaeffer at Camp Hill High … finished high school career with 133 points (53 goals, 27 assists), including 19 goals and 12 assists in 2013 … three-time First Team Mid-Penn All-Star … two-time All-Sentinel First Team … four-star recruit according to TopDrawerSoccer.
LeBlanc on Hester: Colin is a creative attacking midfielder, withdrawn forward type player. He is very good on the ball and has the ability to break down defenders on the dribble and play cutting passes. He knows how to score goals and we think he was a bit under the radar. He is a kid that will make an impact for us from the start.
Jacob Icolari, D/MF, 5-10, 150, Denver, Colo., Wheat Ridge HS/Colorado Rush Academy
Plays for coach Sean Bushey with Colorado Rush Academy … has played in nine games with five starts thus far in 2013-14 … started 25 of 30 games in 2012-13 … led Colorado Rush Nike Team in scoring during the 2012 season … member of the 2010 Colorado ODP pool … member of the Colorado Edge Select Team from 2008-11 … also played for coach Jay Hamilton at Wheat Ridge High … three-star recruit according to TopDrawerSoccer.
LeBlanc on Icolari: Jacob is probably the most physically ready out of any guy in this class. He is tremendously fit, very strong and has a great frame on him. He is a defender who is athletic, fast and good on the ball. He’s the type of kid who can play a big role in a number of positions. He’s a good soccer player and wants to be here.
Conner Owens, GK, 5-10, 165, Richmond, Va., Godwin HS/Richmond Strikers Academy
Plays for coach Michael Milazzo with Richmond Strikers Academy … has started six games thus far in 2013-14 … 2010 Men’s Super Y selection and player … played on the Richmond Strikers Elite Travel Team from 2005-10 … played two seasons for coach Skip Stevens at Godwin High … three-star recruit according to TopDrawerSoccer.
LeBlanc on Owens: Conner is a bit smaller, but extremely athletic and very quick. He is a kid that wanted to come to West Virginia and we thought he would add a lot of depth to the goalkeeper position. He is a prospect for the future, but certainly a kid who will work hard and push the entire goalkeeping unit.
Joey Piatczyc, MF, 5-8, 150, Lee’s Summit, Mo., Lee’s Summit HS/Sporting KC Academy
Plays for coaches Jon Parry and Dave McKay with Sporting KC Academy … has played in 16 games, making 15 starts, thus far in 2013-14 … member of the 2011 and 2012 Sporting KC Reserve Team … 2011 USSDA Winter Showcase Select Team Player … 2011 Generation Adidas Team Player … played two seasons for coach Dave Wiebenga at Lee’s Summit High, earning second team all-state honors in 2011 … four-star recruit according to TopDrawerSoccer … No. 80 on the TopDrawerSoccer IMG Academy 150 … ranked No. 1 recruit in the Heartland region by TopDrawerSoccer … ranked No. 24 midfielder by TopDrawerSoccer … ranked No. 109 played in the Class of 2014 by CollegeSoccerNews.
LeBlanc on Piatczyc: Joey comes from one of MLS’ prize clubs and is the top player in the Sporting KC Academy system. He has had opportunities with the reserve team and has done very well with them. He is a two-way midfielder who is very technical and can score when he comes forward. He is willing to do whatever it takes for the team to be successful and he’s the type of midfielder that is interchangeable and has a great soccer IQ.
Austin Stout, MF, 5-8, 150, Jamison, Pa., Central Bucks South HS/Penn Fusion
Plays for coach Lee Martin with Penn Fusion … member of the Region 1 ODP ’96 team and EPYSA ODP ’96 team that was Region 1 Champions in 2012 and 2013 and a 2013 national finalist … 2013 EPYSA State Champion … played two seasons for coach Don Brady at Central Bucks South High … earned high school’s Coach’s Excellence Award.
LeBlanc on Stout: Austin is a central midfield player, but can play anywhere in the midfield. He is real tidy on the ball and he is very good in terms of playing his role, distributing and moving it quickly. We think he is one of the kids who has flown under the radar playing with Penn Fusion. He doesn’t play in the Academy system, but has been with one of the top clubs in Region I and has done quite well.
Louis Thomas, D, 6-0, 160, Houston, Texas, Lamar HS/Houston Dynamo Academy
Two-year captain for coach James Clarkson at Houston Dynamo Academy … has played in 12 games, making 11 starts, thus far in 2013-14 … started in 22 of 23 games during the 2012-13 season … played with current Mountaineers, Christian Diaz
and Alex Ochoa
, with Houston Dynamo … four-star recruit according to TopDrawerSoccer … ranked No. 28 recruit in the Texas region by TopDrawerSoccer.
LeBlanc on Thomas: Louis has been the captain of the Dynamo Academy for two years and has been a stalwart on the defensive line. He is another guy who is very athletic and ready to step in and make an impact on day one. What we like about Louis is that he has come from very good coaching, but he is a leader by nature. He is vocal, he is a character guy and the type of guy who can inspire his teammates. He knows the game and we’re excited about adding Louis to our defense and he can be someone who challenges for minutes right away.