BETHLEHEM, Pa. — Lehigh men's soccer is getting prepared for the 2019 season and head coach Dean Koski has officially revealed the program's Class of 2023 as the 2019 recruiting class. The deep class includes eight players from Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Maryland, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Arizona. Every player was chosen to improve the depth of the current team and replenish individuals lost through graduation.
"We've met our recruiting objectives for this class in terms of positions that were most important to us," said Koski. "We also want to continue improving the depth of our team and this class will afford us that.
"I think our team knows and certainly our coaching staff is aware that in order for us to be successful in postseason play, we have to have a stronger bench, and adding this class on the heels of the last freshman class makes us have two great classes coming in that I'm very excited about."
Head Coach Dean Koski, along with Assistant Coach Ryan Hess went more in depth with each of the incoming freshman. Presenting the Lehigh Men's Soccer Class of 2023.
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Thatcher Cooper - Chandler, Ariz. - Real Salt Lake, Phoenix Rising FC – Defender
As a junior, Thatcher was a consistent starter with Real Salt Lake Academy and helped his team finish as Generation Adidas Cup regional winner, Western Conference champion and sixth place nationally. As a senior, Thatcher captained his high school soccer team while playing with Phoenix Rising Youth and training with the USL Championship professional team. Thatcher was selected to the boys Winter HS All-American Watch List, while being a member of the National Honors Society and an AP Scholar.
Coach Koski on Thatcher: "Thatcher is a smart and technically sound defender. He is capable of playing anywhere along the back-line, and he has the ability to read and assess the game at a high level. Thatcher is a confident and mature player and will not only impact the program on the field, but also as a leader and role model off the field. I am looking forward to see what Thatcher can contribute to our team the next four years."
Dominic Flowers- West Reading, Pa. – Lehigh Valley United – Defender/Midfielder
Dominic is another local player joining us from LVU and the Reading Area. Dom was voted Berks County Player of the Year, as well as being voted two-time All-County, All-State and First Team All-Region. He is also an integral part of the backline for the LVU '00 Boys team that competes in the National League and recently qualified for the National Championships in 2019.
Coach Koski on Dom: "Dom is an extremely versatile and technical player. He has shown success as a defender and midfielder at the highest levels of club soccer, while succeeding in high school as a forward as a proven goal scorer. Dom has the tools to succeed within our team, bringing a strong technical and tactical skill set as well as athleticism and grit necessary in Division-I soccer. Having watched Dom since he was 12 years old at Lehigh Valley United, I know his potential is unlimited and is a great addition to our program.
Euan Forrest - Douglassville, Pa. - Lehigh Valley United – Defender
Euan is a highly decorated local player coming to us from Hill School and Lehigh Valley United. He captained his high school team to a state semifinal appearance and Atlantic Prep League Champion. Euan was selected to participate in the High School All-America Game in 2018, with future teammate Jack Sarkos, as well as being voted All-MAPL 1st Team, and Mercury All-Area Player of the Year. Academically he was recognized as the Hill School Best General Academic Record, and High School Cum Laude Society. Euan also anchors the backline on one of the top club teams in the country and helped them earn a place in the National Championship in 2019 through National League automatic qualification.
Coach Koski on Euan: "We couldn't be more excited to welcome another Forrest to the program. Euan will bring leadership, technical ability, and a high level game awareness to the back-line. He can play in central defense as well as outside back, and his distribution will help to improve the team in possession. I am excited to see the level that Euan can achieve, as I believe his best soccer is ahead of him. Like Dom, I have been fortunate to watch Euan's development as a player since he was 12 years old."
Spencer Koski- Bethlehem, Pa. - Lehigh Valley United – Midfielder
Spencer was captain of Liberty High School, and was selected First Team All-EPC and First Team All-Area as a senior. Spencer helped lead his school to the EPC Semifinals, and has participated in the National League with Lehigh Valley United. Spencer played an important part, along with current club and future college teammates Euan Forrest and Dom Flowers, in his team's early qualification for the National Championships this summer. Spencer will join his brothers Alec Koski '20 and Trevor Koski ''21 who coach/manage and play respectively.
Coach Ryan Hess on Spencer: "Spencer is a competitive and versatile player who will bring depth to the team. He has a high game IQ which allows him to fill many different roles for high school and club. His life-long connection to Lehigh and program make him a great fit, as he understands the expectations and commitment to success. As well, he will join four of his LVU teammates that he has played with for the past six years."
Bryce Meredith- Raleigh, N.C. - Wake FC Raleigh Gold - Midfielder
Bryce serves as the captain of his club team, Wake FC, as well as his high school team. He helped guide his club team to a state cup championship in 2018 as well as participating in USYS Regional Championships. Bryce was selected as an All-Conference player for his high school team.
Coach Koski on Bryce: "Bryce is a confident and multi-talented player. We identified him through one of our ID Clinics and his quality was immediately evident to the coaching staff. At 6 foot 4 inches tall, he is an imposing, left-footed player, while being technical and composed with the ball. As well, his soccer IQ and versatility will enable him to play as a midfielder or as a defender. I am excited to see what Bryce can do at the next level coming from such a strong club program."
Natan Rosen- Bethesda, Md. – McLean Youth Soccer- Midfielder/Forward
As a senior, Natan lead his high school team, Walt Whitman, to a 4-A State Championship while finishing the year with 17 goals and 11 assists. Natan was recognized as the 2018 Washington Post All-Met Player of the Year, along with 2017 and 2018 honors as First Team All-State and First Team All-Met selections. Natan plays for his club soccer with McLean SC and has already helped his team qualify for back-to-back National Championship appearances.
Coach Koski on Natan: "Natan is a dynamic and creative left-footed attacking player, with the ability to unbalance defenses with his dribbling, passing and movement without the ball. He is very technical, quick with an exceptional soccer brain and can play in several attacking roles. Natan will improve the team's ability to create and score goals. I feel strongly that Nate has some qualities as a player that will translate very well at the Division-I level."
Jack Sarkos- Linwood, N.J. – SJEB Rush – Forward
Jack will join fellow New Jersey natives, Stevo Bednarsky and Ikem Mbalewe on the roster this fall, coming out of Mainland High School as well as playing his club soccer with South Jersey Elite Barons Rush. Jack broke Mainland's career goal scoring record (75) as well as the single season record (26). Jack has received many accolades during his high school career: Three-time First Team CAL, three-time Atlantic City Press First Team, two-time Cape Atlantic League Player of the Year, two-time Glory Days Player of the Year, Atlantic City Press Player of the Year, two-time South Jersey First Team, and three-time NJ.com First Team. Jack also participated in the High School All-America Game in 2018, with future teammate Euan Forrest.
Coach Koski on Jack: "Jack is a proven goal-scorer, and that is a difficult quality to teach at our level. He has shown the ability to consistently produce goals and points in high school and club soccer. Jack has the physical qualities to be successful as a striker in college, and his confidence as well as his final product around goal will provide the team with attacking depth. I think Jack has the ability to produce goals for our program and hopefully will emerge as bona fide Division-I goal scorer."
Andrew White- Boxborough, Mass. – New England Revolution – Defender
Andrew will join the program out of Acton-Boxborough High School and the New England Revolution DA program, following in the footsteps of graduating senior and co-captain Matt Morana. Andrew has been a consistent starter as an outside back in his last four years with the Revolution that consistently competes in with the best clubs throughout the US.
Coach Koski on Andrew: "Andrew comes to the program out of one of the top Development and MLS Academies in the country, and his experience playing with and against elite academy players on a daily basis has been invaluable in his development. Andrew brings speed and confidence with the ball as well as a very good 1-v-1 defending that has fortified his role as a starter for his Revs teams. Andrew fills a positional need for us by adding quality depth and we are looking forward to integrating him into the program. I think Andrew will thrive at Lehigh and in the Patriot League as an outside back and excited to welcome him to Lehigh."