Date Posted:09/07/2005,  3:30PM

2005 Men's Soccer Season Preview

HEAD COACH: Fran O'Leary (1st season)

LEADING RETURNERS: Andrew Russo (7 goals-4 assists, All-New England, All-NESCAC), Simon Parsons (6-1), Nick Figueiredo (5-0), Nathan Lovitz (1178 minutes, 57 saves, 0.92 GAA)

KEY LOSSES: Tom Bresnehan (6 goals-1 assist), Ethan Roth (1 goal-4 assists, All-NESCAC), Danny Sullivan (All-American, All-New England, All-NESCAC)

NEWCOMERS: Dominic Fitzpatrick, Peter Mills, Henry Ashforth, Brendan Mooney

2004 RECAP (10-6): Bowdoin entered the NESCAC playoffs last season with a 9-5 overall mark and a 6-3 conference record- good enough for the third seed in the postseason tournament. After avenging a midseason loss to Amherst with a 1-0 victory in the opening round of post-season play, the Polar Bears suffered an unfortunate 2-0 defeat at the hands of perennial rival Middlebury, cutting the season unexpectedly short. While the scoreboard was dominated throughout the season by junior Andrew Russo, who notched 7 of the teams 30 goals, it was more notable as the swan song for one of the strongest classes ever to grace the Bowdoin pitch. Senior Danny Sullivan, one of Bowdoin's all-time great defenders earned a number of post-season honors for his stellar play, as did classmate Ethan Roth. Senior Tom Bresnahan was second on the team in scoring, and fellow seniors Bobby Desilets, Tucker Hodgkins, Bucky Jencks, and Jacques Guana all contributed with their play and left a legacy of leadership with their final season wearing the black and white.

2005 PREVIEW: The Polar Bears will look for success in a year of adjustment. New head coach Fran O'Leary brings sixteen years of head coaching experience to Bowdoin and will inherit a squad that is teeming with talent. Seniors William Waters and Mike Crowley will take the reins of the Bowdoin backfield in the absence of All-American back Danny Sullivan. Their leadership will be crucial to Bowdoin's success, as will the scoring ability of Andrew Russo, who led the squad in goals and points last season and stands tied for fifth all-time among Bowdoin goal-scorers. Midfielders Brendan Fisher and Hosheus Isaac, along with returning defender Ethan Galloway, round out the seniors who will run the field for the Polar Bears this fall. Netminder Nathan Lovitz will return for his sophomore season between the pipes for Bowdoin after posting a strong rookie campaign. In the end, the team's success will likely depend on the play of the underclassmen; a task they appear up to. Key matches find the Polar Bears playing rival Colby (Sept. 17) and perennial NESCAC power Williams (Sept. 24) in Brunswick, while back-to-back road games against Amherst (Oct. 1) and Middlebury (Oct. 2) could present a season-defining weekend for the Polar Bears.

DID YOU KNOW?: Fran O'Leary is no stranger to Division III soccer, having coached at Elmira (N.Y.) College and Kenyon (Ohio) College prior to Division I stops at Dartmouth and George Mason. The Dublin, Ireland native is 70-15-6 (.802 winning percentage) all-time in Division III play.

COACH O'LEARY SAYS: "We could go 14-0, 0-14 or something in between. Where we end up will greatly depend on the hard work and camaraderie that we develop as a team this season."