SANTA CLARA, Calif. – The Bronco men's soccer team officially closed out the 2013 season with their end of the year banquet last week. While the team is ready to prepare for next season, a few of the graduating seniors are ready to take on the pros.
"The banquet is a great event for closure," said Bronco head coach Cameron Rast. "It's a great time to recognize the individuals that were successful within our team, conference and at higher levels as well as a time to review the season and honor the team as a group."
The Broncos started the 2013 season off with a 0-4 record but fought back throughout the rest of the season to place second in the West Coast Conference, just a few points shy of the conference championship. Though the players and coaches are a major part in the program's success, Rast credits others for their contributions. "For me, the banquet is a chance to thank those who put a lot into our program," continued Rast. "Whether it be players, parents, staff, administration or donors, they're all an important part of making this program possible."
As the coaches announced the team awards, Mark Daus was honored as the Defensive MVP while Harrison Hanley was named Offensive MVP. "A two-year captain and four-year starter for us, I can't say enough about what Daus has done for our program over the past four years," said Rast. "Hanley had a break out year this season and he was able to do a great job for us on offense."
As the senior class gave their final farewells to the team, many of them have plans to join teams at the professional level. Keigo Kameya who has played with German teams in the past, is going to utilize his foreign passport to find his way over in Europe and coach Rast believe his best days of playing are in front of him.
Carlos Montes who was sidelined the last few games of the season, is now healthy and eager to join the pros. The All-WCC First Team honoree spent some time playing in Mexico shortly after season ended and has been traveling to various combines to be seen by professional coaches. "Carlos is someone who has put in more than you could ever ask in his preparation to play professionally," said Rast. "It's just a matter of being in front of clubs enough for them to recognize what he brings to the table and that is a high level of play, consistently on a day on day basis."
There are several different combines throughout the United States to be seen by professional team coaches and four of the Santa Clara Bronco seniors were invited to the North American Soccer League (NASL) Combine in Irvine, Calif. from Jan. 24-26. Daus, Montes, Muscarella and Hanley competed amongst a number of foreign and domestic elite players.
Hanley was able to make a name for himself, not only being invited to play in the combine's all-star games but was invited to preseason camp with the New York Cosmos. The Cosmos' scout identified Hanley as "one of his top-five players" and coach Rast is very excited for him to join the team in camp. Hanley also impressed coaches as he participated in combines in Ventura County and with the San Jose Earthquakes. "I was talking to Mark Watson," said Rast about the Earthquakes' head coach, "and he like Harrison a lot. He didn't have enough room on the team to bring him in but if Harrison continues to be around, I think he'll potentially get invited back to have a longer look at."
Good luck to all of the Bronco seniors as they persue their careers past Santa Clara. Follow SantaClaraBroncos.com for the latest news on the men's soccer team.