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SCHOLASTIC SOCCER: Pitt's Teams Picked to Finish Last In ACC; RMU Senior on Hermann Trophy Lists

SCHOLASTIC SOCCER: Pitt's Teams Picked to Finish Last In ACC; RMU Senior on Hermann Trophy Lists

This week throughout Pennsylvania, boys and girls soccer teams have begun with official practices as PIAA mandated first day of practices for Fall sports is Monday, August 17.
In the meantime, most of the College teams have already been underway with their preseasons.
As the scholastic soccer teams have begun their preparations and training, here are some things to be on the look out for in the Pittsburgh area college soccer scene and a few players on local/in-state teams who have made their way on the Hermann Award lists:
PITT’s TEAMS PICKED FOR ACC PITS   

When Pitt moved into the Atlantic Coast Conference it was expected that the competition would be even steeper than what they faced in the Big East.
Both the men’s and women’s teams at Pitt were given little respect by their fellow ACC coaches in the preseason polls. Pitt’s men’s team was picked to finish last in the ACC’s Coastal Division while the women’s were in the dubious last spot in the 14 team women’s alignment.
In a close vote, defending national champion Virginia is the ACC preseason favorite ahead of Clemson, Louisville, North Carolina and Notre Dame. Current Pittsburgh Riverhounds goalie, Calle Brown, was the starting keeper for Virginia during their impressive title run last season.
On the women’s side, defending national champion Florida State is the overwhelming pick to win the ACC women’s title.
LOCAL PLAYERS ON HERMANN TROPHY WATCH LISTS 
Robert Morris' Brett is a player to watch.

Robert Morris’ Brett is a player to watch.

The most impressive player in the Pittsburgh college scene may just be Robert Morris University senior men’s soccer forward Neco Brett.   This past week Brett was announced as one of 30 players who were marked as potential candidates for the 2015 Missouri Athletic Club’s (MAC) Hermann Trophy.The MAC Hermann Trophy is the most prestigious individual award in NCAA soccer and is presented annually to one male and one female athlete. Brett is the leading scorer in all of NCAA Division I over the last two seasons and is second among active players in scoring with 69 points on 29 goals and 11 assists.
As a junior in 2014, Brett scored 15 goals and recorded three assists for a total of 33 points, a mark that was tied for first nationally at the end of the regular season.  In all, the Jamaican native has scored 29 goals during his tenure at Robert Morris.
Brett has been projected as a high 2016 MLS Superdraft pick.   Brett is part of a Jamaican pipeline at Robert Morris, where Devon “Speedy” Williams, who was signed by New York Red Bulls this year, was a teammate of Brett’s.
West Virginia junior Kadeisha Buchanan, who represented host Canada at the 2015 Women’s World Cup, where she won the Hyundai Young Player Award, heads the the MAC Hermann Trophy Watch for women’s soccer. Her Mountaineer and Canada teammate, Ashley Lawrence, is also on the list. They are among five nominees on the list who played in the Women’s World Cup.  The other player on that list of note is SoccerAmerica – West Virginia pair tops women’s watch list is Raquel Rodriguez — a senior midfielder for Penn State who also played in the World Cup this summer — and at Heinz Field on Sunday for Costa Rica.

Pittsburgh Soccer Report will devote coverage of area College and High School soccer as many of their 2015 seasons will begin in the coming weeks.  

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets including Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, and more. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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