|Queens soccer aims to improve on winning results in 2019 campaign|
|Royals adapt to new players after 10-6-1 season|
|Published Saturday, August 24, 2019 10:26 am|
|Queens, which shared the 2018 South Atlantic Conference regular season title with Lenoir-Rhyne, is looking to improve on the result in 2019, which included a berth in the NCAA Division II playoffs.|
Queens Royals soccer will look different this season.
The 2018 South Atlantic Conference regular season co-champions—shared with Lenoir-Rhyne—had nine seniors who led them to the NCAA tournament and a record of 10-6-1 (7-3 SAC). Three of those seniors, whose class comprised nearly half of the starting lineup, started every game. They also scored 35 of the Royals’ 43 goals. Seniors Edmundo Robinson led Queens with eight goals and seven assists, along with Alberto Morales, who scored eight goals and supplied two assists.
“Last year we had a very successful season—in the conference, in the region, and obviously, we went to the NCAA, but all of this is in the past,” coach Oliver Carias said. “I firmly believe that everything you do, you’ve gotta earn it, and we haven’t earned anything right now.”
The Royals, who were selected second in SAC preseason coaches’ poll behind Lenoir-Rhyne, added 11 freshmen, including two redshirts. Queens opens preseason play at Division I High Point Aug. 24 at 7 p.m.
“For us, it’s an opportunity for a lot of guys who had a role to have an even bigger role this year, and for the newcomers to step in,” Carias said. “Every game that we go in[to] we haven’t earned anything. We are going into every game thinking we start from zero. It’s a whole new season. Whatever we earned last year is done.”
Two Royals earned all-conference selection: junior defender Michael Hornsby on the first team and senior goalkeeper Sebastian Kalk on the second. Hornsby, a perennial all-conference selection, scored a goal and provided four assists for the Royals last season. In 2017, he set the program record for the most minutes played in a single season: 1,801.
“We played a 3-5-2 last year,” Hornsby said. “It suited our play really good with [Robinson and Morales] up front. Now we’re going to try a different system: 4-3-3 against High Point, just to adapt to the new players.”
Stetson transfer Elvis Menayese, a junior, will potentially step into Robinson’s role up top.
“We’ve got Elvis coming in, who we hope can replace Edmundo well,” Hornsby said.
Kalk kept six clean sheets last season after transferring from Cleveland State. He also earned all-conference recognition in his first season with the Royals.
“We lost some major players in the backline with Pedro [Oliveira] and Omar [Okyar],” Kalk said. “We’ve definitely got good transfers in—good newcomers from overseas who have definitely played, even in Europe, at a high level. They’ll definitely be able to step in and fill in the spaces we have. I’m pretty positive we have a decent backline.”
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