Cal State Fullerton signs 17 for 2015

July 2, 2015

The Cal State Fullerton men's soccer team added 17 new faces to the program that won its first ever Big West Conference Tournament title in 2014, it was announced on Monday by second-year head coach George Kuntz.

The Titans signed 11 freshmen, primarily from the Southern California area, with Brandon West, Ross McPhie and Marshall Metzger representing the new Titans hailing from outside of the confines of California. With the loss of 12 seniors from the 2014 team, the Titans also nabbed six junior-college transfers that will look to increase the overall experience of the squad.

Fullerton also highlighted its global reach this offseason by landing recruits, West and McPhie from Knivsta, Uppsala (Sweden) and Nelson, New Zealand, respectively.

In 2014, the Titans finished with a record of 10-8-6 overall including a run into the NCAA Tournament for the eighth time in school history. All 17 new faces will look to make an immediate impact on the pitch for Fullerton as the program looks to achieve back–to-back Big West Tournament Championships and NCAA Tournament appearances for the first time in school history.

Here is a closer look at the student-athletes who chose to represent the Titans in 2015:

Roman Manning
Height: 5'10
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Deerfield, WI
Position: Forward

Kuntz: "Roman is a very talented target forward who plays for the state-champion Fullerton Rangers Soccer Club program coached by James Obleda and state-champion Servite High School coached by Jon Spencer."

Jake Fisher
Height: 6'0
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.
Position: Midfielder

Kuntz:"Jacob is a versatile forward who has a knack for scoring goals. He played under Dallas Jaussi and Paul Caliguiri at Elite Soccer Club and was the all-time leading goal scorer at Santa Margarita High School coached by Wade Fraser."

Oscar M. Flores
Height: 5'11
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Anaheim, Calif.
Position: Midfielder

Kuntz: "Oscar has the ability to connect the team and set up scoring while keeping possession. He skillful versatile midfielder who plays for the highly acclaimed West Coast Futbol Club team coached by Chris Gould, while also playing for state-champion Servite High School under Jon Spencer."

Marshall Metzger
Height: 6'0
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Position: Forward

Kuntz: "Marshall plays for the top-club team in New Mexico and is a tremendously powerful force as a striker. His presence, back to goal, and ability in the air will be a great addition for the Titans. Marshall played four years for Eldorado High School under head coach Walt Witowski ('11-'13) and Tom Hirshman ('14), while playing 10 years for Rio Rapids Football Club for head coach Jason Moran."

Ricardo Covarrubias
Height: 5'7
Year: Junior
Hometown: Cudahy, Calif.
Position: Midfielder / Defender

Kuntz: "Ricardo is a strong leader and very strong defender who was the captain of the state-champion, and No. 2-ranked, Cerritos Junior College coached by Ben Artiaga."

Ether Bustos
Height: 5'7
Year: Freshman
Hometown: San Juan Capistrano, Calif.
Position: Midfielder / Forward

Kuntz: "Ether is a very skillful versatile midfielder who has spend four year playing for the highly acclaimed West Coast Futbol Club team coached by Chris Gould and four years at J. Serra Cathloic High School under Oliver Wyse."

Ruben Alvarez
Height: 6'0
Year: Junior
Hometown: Littlerock, Calif.
Position: Midfielder

Kuntz: "We are very excited to add Ruben into our incoming class. The Taft College Central Valley Conference Player of the Year will bring experience and composure into our midfield. Taft College was ranked first in the state, and nationally, for most of the 2014 season under head coach Angelo Cutrona."

Ronaldo 'Ro' Pineda
Height: 5'11
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Santa Ana, Calif.
Position: Midfielder / Forward

Kuntz: "Ro is considered a top-class forward with the ability to run at defenses, create, and score. He plays for the state-champion Fullerton Rangers Soccer Club coached by James Obleda and Century High School coached by Bruce Silverman."

Brandon West
Height: 5'11
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Knivsta, Uppsala (Sweden)
Position: Forward

Kuntz: "Brandon arrives to the Titans from Sweden as a highly touted, explosive forward with lethal attacking abilities in several positions. Brandon's speed and finishing prowess will test many defenders in the Big West conference. Brandon played for IK Sirius Football Club, and spent one season with Athletic Football Club under head coach Philip Lyons in Stockholm.

Edgar Rodriguez
Height: 5'11
Year: Junior
Hometown: Littlerock, Calif.
Position: Forward

Kuntz: "Edgar is a hardworking, box-to-box midfielder, who brings leadership qualities into our program. He played for No. 1-ranked Taft College under head coach Angelo Cutrona.

Carlos Jose Troncoso
Height: 5'9
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Anaheim, Calif.
Position: Defender / Midfielder

Kuntz: "Jose is a very special talented defender who reads the game well while acting as a skillful attacking force from his outside back position. His aggressive runs out of the back create a host of problems for opposing teams. He plays for the state-champion Fullerton Rangers Soccer Club coached by James Obleda, and Katella High School coached by Juan Martinez."

Oscar Torres
Height: 5'10
Year: Junior
Hometown: Palmdale, Calif.
Position: Midfielder

Kuntz: "Oscar is a versatile player that can contribute to our team. His ability to set players up with his vision and ability to score goals will be a tremendous asset. He played for No. 1-ranked Taft College under head coach Angelo Cutrona."

Elijah Barajas
Height: 5'11
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Anaheim, Calif.
Position: Defender

Kuntz: "Elijah is a strong, hard-nosed defender and a great leader. He plays for the state-champion Fullerton Rangers Soccer Club coached by James Obleda, and state-champion Servite High School coached by Jon Spencer.

Amirgy Pineda
Height: 5'7
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Santa Ana, Calif.
Position: Midfielder / Forward

Kuntz: "In his age group, Ami is one of the best midfielders in the country who has already represented the USA on the U18 National team. He is highly acclaimed for his ability to create and possess. He plays for the state-champion Fullerton Rangers Soccer Club coached by James Obleda, and Century High School coached by Bruce Silverman."

James 'Ross' McPhie
Height: 5'8
Year: Freshman
Hometown: Nelson, New Zealand
Position: Midfielder

Kuntz: "James comes to Cal State Fullerton by way of New Zealand and was called into the U17 National team training camp for his country this past season. He is a true box-to-box midfielder who's work ethic and relentless ball possession abilities will be highly valuable. James played for head coach Chris Zoricich at Saint Kentigern College, he also played a season for Western Springs Football Club under head coach Neil Emblen and three years with Nelson Suburbs Club under Ben Wright."

Ramon Chavez
Height: 6-3
Year: Junior
Hometown: El Paso, Texas
Position: Defender

Kuntz: "Ramon is a talented defender that transferred in from Taft Junior College. He played for No. 1-ranked Taft and coached by Angelo Cutrona."

Alex Toderica
Height: 6-2
Year: Senior
Hometown: Longmont, Colo.
Position: Forward

Kuntz: "Alex is a four year transfer that provides size, scoring ability, and the ability to distribute as a target. He is a First Team All-Conference and Second Team All-Colorado honoree to go along with a First Team All-Academic nod. He has trained with the Colorado Rapids Development Academy U-18 and has netted 15 goals in 22 matches for the Rapids."

"There is great potential in our recruiting class this year," Kuntz said. "The players we have recruited fit well within our exciting attacking style, system of play, and complement our team in many tangible and intangible ways. We have added some strong attacking players by recruiting forwards and midfielders, and filled voids left by graduating seniors in defensive positions. This recruiting class adds size, speed, and skill to an already talented group returning next year."
The Titans begin their title defense in 2015 with an exhibition game against Cal Berkeley at 7:00 p.m. on August 16 at Titan Stadium.

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