Richards Earns Preseason All-SoCon Nod
Richards Earns Preseason All-SoCon Nod
Monday, February 1, 2021

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 1, 2021) – The Southern Conference announced its preseason men’s conference rankings and all-conference teams Monday afternoon. The Bucs were predicted fourth, headlined by sophomore Kieran Richards (Hamilton, New Zealand) receiving a nod to the Preseason All-SoCon Team after a six goal, two assist freshman campaign.

Entering his rookie season with high expectations, the Kiwi midfielder provided just that, scoring the second-most goals as a freshman in Buccaneer history with his six tallies. His performance throughout the year led him to being selected to the All-SoCon Second Team and All-Freshman Team.

Richards is one of the three starters ETSU returns, including reigning SoCon Goalkeeper of the Year Josh Perryman (Sheffield, England). After the graduation of three integral pieces of the Buccaneer defense, Austin Bihlmeyer (Knoxville, Tenn.) remains as the lone mainstay in defense, leading a new-look backline for ETSU. The Blue and Gold welcome 14 additions to the roster, gaining experience with six transfers while hoping for immediate impact from the eight freshmen.

The Bucs open their season in just four days, hosting Big East foes Xavier at Summers-Taylor Stadium on February 5. Kick is scheduled for 3 p.m.

ETSU received 17 votes as a team to place fourth in voting. After winning the SoCon Tournament a season ago, Mercer grabbed five first-place votes on their way preseason favorites in the conference, just edging out 2019 regular season champions Furman. UNCG and Wofford find themselves on either side of the Bucs, while Belmont and VMI close out the standings. All seven coaching staffs voted in the selection of the two accolades, not allowed to vote for their team or players.


2020-21 Men’s Soccer Preseason Coaches’ Poll (First Place Votes)

  1. Mercer (5)       34
  2. Furman (1)      30
  3. UNCG (1)         29
  4. ETSU                17
  5. Wofford          16
  6. Belmont          15
  7. VMI                 6


2020-21 Men’s Soccer Preseason All-Conference Team

F          Trevor Martineau, Mercer
F          Niccolo Dagnoni, Belmont
F          Micah Albert, UNCG
MF       Kieran Richards, ETSU
MF       Adrian Roseth, Wofford
MF       Nelson Oceano, UNCG
D          Cole McLagan, Furman
D          Tommy Kay, Furman
D          Kareve Richards, Mercer
D          Buster Sjoberg, Wofford
GK       JR DeRose, Mercer