WASHINGTON — American University head men's soccer coach Zach Samol has announced the addition of seven freshman and two transfers to the roster.
The class is evenly divided with three forwards, three midfielders, two defenders and one goalkeeper. Of the nine newcomers, eight represent eight different states with one international player.
Below is a player-by-player breakdown with a quote on why each student-athlete chose American University.
Farmington, Minn. / IMG Academy / Appalachian State
2016 (at Appalachian State): 2016: Appeared in 14 matches, starting 12 between the frames ... finished with a 4-3-4 record with three-straight clean sheets (fourth in Sun Belt) ... made 38 saves overall (sixth in Sun Belt) on the year, allowing just 13 goals in almost 1,200 minutes played... finished with a 0.98 goals against average (second in Sun Belt) and a .745 save percentage (fourth in Sun Belt) ... recorded back-to-back-to-back shutouts, beginning with pushing then-defending Sun Belt champion Hartwick (Oct. 15) to a scoreless 0-0 decision where he recorded a career-high eight saves ... his best stretch came when he went 3-0-3 ... Agnew went more than 310-minutes straight without allowing a goal... during the streak, he had a 0.41 GAA and .893 save percentage, ranking him the leader among freshman goalkeepers in the nation and top 5 overall... also recorded four saves against UNC Asheville (Sept. 27) in the 2-1 win... named back-to-back Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week (Oct. 11 and 18) … received New Comer of the Year Award for 2016 Season as well as Academic Honor Roll
High School: Played at one season at Farmington High School before moving over to IMG Academy … Named MVP at Farmington in 2013… at IMG, he was tabbed Goalkeeper of the Year in 2014 and 2015 … won the Super 20's National Championship in 2015 with IMG Academy.
Personal: Son of Sonia and Wes Agnew … has one sister, Jules.
Why Agnew Chose American: "The coaching staff at American have all expressed their belief in me as a goalkeeper, and that is huge for any player. After working with Coach Dan Louisignau at Appalachian State University, I was extremely excited about the possibility of joining him in his first season at American. I'm confident in the coaching staff's experience and that they have what it takes to build our program this season and in the coming years. American University offers its students an opportunity to earn a great education while interacting with students from all over the world. I am extremely excited and grateful for this opportunity!"
Rockville, Md. / Richard Montgomery / Bethesda Academy
High School: Two-year letterwinner at Richard Montgomery … scored 18 career goals and 12 assists.
Club: Two seasons with Bethesda Academy for coaches Brett Colton and Matt Ney … scored three goals and had five assists.
Personal: Son of Miyuki and Robert Beringer … has three siblings, Emily; Sarah and Robbie
Why Beringer Chose American: "I chose American University because of the combination of athletics and academics. The school is amazing with the prestigious Kogod School of Business and how great the rest of the school is academically. Family is also very important to me, so another reason I chose AU is because of its great location."
Pittsburgh, Pa. / Hampton / Riverhounds Development Academy
High School: At Hampton was an All-WPIAI selection and a two-time all-sectional player … named team MVP in 2018.
Personal: Son of Amy and David Cook … has two sisters, Megan and Allie
Why Cook Chose American: "Coming into my visit, I knew the coaching staff had an elite reputation. All three coaches are on the same page- turn American into a championship program- and that was very evident to me. I enjoyed watching the team practice; the intensity that Coach Samol demands out of the players is incredible. As for the academics, I'm not exactly sure what I want to study yet, but American offers so many top-notch programs. I've always wanted to spend more time in D.C., and American has such a beautiful campus."
Anchorage, Alaska / West Anchorage / Portland Timbers Academy
High School: Three-year letterwinner at West Anchorage … has scored 26 career goals and 26 assists for the Eagles.
Personal: Son of Shani and David Green … Has one brother, Jordan and one sister, Ruth
Why Green Chose American: American offers me the opportunity to pursue a first-class education in such an exciting city. I look forward to competing athletically at the highest level and representing AU both on-and-off the field.
Nashville, Tenn. / Father Ryan / East Tennessee State
2018 (At ETSU): Played in 12 games as a sophomore after redshirting as a freshman … scored his first collegiate goal against High Point (8/31/18) …
2017 (at ETSU): Redshirt season
High School: Named to the 2017 all-region team and 2017 All-Tennesee Team...Was the leading goal scorer for the Irish in his senior season.
Personal: Son of Dana Bonamino and Todd Hellmann … has five siblings, Megan; Kaitlyn; Kevin; Lena; Matteo
Why Hellmann Chose American: Because of its combination of outstanding academics and a strong soccer program.
Staten Island, New York / Monsignor Farrell / Cedar Stars Academy
Club: Played six seasons with Cedar Stars Academy … invited to seven US Regional Training Centers with the US National coaching staff (2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016) … played in three international tours — 2015 (Spain Friendship Tour - against UE Cornella and Levante Moratalaz), 2016 (NJCSA England and France Friendship Tour (against West Ham, Kelvedon Hatch FC and Paris FC) and 2017 (Germany Friendship Tour - against Rot WeiB Oberhausen and MSV Duisburg).
Personal: Son of Stephanie and Peter Mesbah … Has one sister, Samantha
Why Mesbah Chose American: "I chose AU because of its high level of academics and athletics. I was attracted to the program's rich history and winning culture, as well as the high level of competition in the Patriot League. The coaches and players are leading the program in the right direction, and this is something that I am eager to become apart of. From an academic standpoint, AU's location in Washington D.C. is something that will enhance my academic experience and expand my horizons in pursuing a career path. The emphasis on developing student-athletes is extremely important to me, and this is something that AU takes pride in."
Sofia, Bulgaria / ACS Hillingdon / Nigel James Academy
High School: Played four years for Bill Street at ASC Hillingdon … two-time International School Sports Tournament winner and scored the game-winning goal as a freshman … first freshman to be part of a gold medal team … had 10+ goals and 10+ assists all four seasons for the Eagles.
Club: Played four years at Aldershot Academy (2013-17) and two at Nigel James Academy (2017-19) … spent nine years with ODP Europe.
Personal: Son of Mary and Peter Poelzlbauer.
Why Poelzlbauer Chose American: The universities interest in recruiting international students; a clear commitment to supporting a world-class soccer program and my visit to campus.
Bridgewater, N.J. / PDA
Club: Five-time New Jersey Cup winner … starter on the 2017-18 and 2018-19 Development Academy playoff team for PDA … was part of the Region 1 championship in 2013.
Personal: Son of Elcie and Michael Searchwell … has two siblings, Jamila and Shomar.
Why Searchwell Chose American: "I chose AU because of its strong soccer history and the opportunity to be a part of such a promising program. When I first met the team I knew this was something I wanted to be a part of. Additionally, American University is a top-level university. Their extra focus on students and the quality of each class caught my attention. Not only is AU a great school, but it also located in Washington, D.C., which is a major city that I have fallen in love with and the opportunities that arise here."
Gastonia, North Carolina / Gaston Day School / Carolina Rapids
High School: Broke the single-season goal mark with 36 goals and had nine assists as a senior at Gaston Day School … named all-conference, All-North Carolina and Team of the County.
Club: Played three season with the Carolina Rapids … Scored 15 career goals with six assists … part of the first Carolins Rapids squad to reach the Developmental Academy playoffs after a five-year hiatus in 2017-18.
Why Wright Chose American: "I wanted to be part of a competitive program, where I could work for a place in the team. I wanted to be part of a team that will compete for success on the field and will work to win trophies against top quality teams. American also has an excellent academic program, where I will have to work equally as hard to succeed in the classroom."