Aug. 23, 2007
Butler's young men's soccer team has been picked fifth in the preseason poll of Horizon League coaches, released on Thursday (Aug. 23). Defending champion UIC, coming off a 13-3-5 campaign, was chosen as the preseason favorite to win this year's league title.
The Bulldogs return five starters from last year's squad, which posted a 7-11-2 record and finished sixth in the Horizon League. Butler handed nationally-ranked UIC its lone league setback a year ago, and coach Kelly Findley's squad upset UW-Milwaukee in the first round of the Horizon League Tournament. Junior Frank Patano, who led the Bulldogs in scoring last season, and junior Eduardo Garcia, a two-year starter at forward, both return for Findley's club, which features 16 newcomers.
UIC won the Horizon League regular season title with a 5-1-1 record a year ago. The Flames were ranked as high as seventh in the nation during the season and wound up leading the NCAA Division I with a 0.36 goals against average. UIC received eight first place votes in the preseason poll.
Green Bay received the other first place vote in the nine-team poll and was picked second by the coaches. UW-Milwaukee was tabbed third, followed by Loyola, Butler, Cleveland State, Detroit, Wright State and Valparaiso.
Butler opens the 2007 season on Friday, August 31, against Sacramento State in the Dayton Tournament. The Bulldogs will begin Horizon League play on Sept. 23 at Valparaiso.