The 2012 season promises to be a rebuilding year for Berkeley New York men's soccer. After reaching the Hudson Valley Men's Athletic Conference final in 2009 and winning the conference championship in 2010, the 2011 season ended disappointingly with a second place regular season finish and a home loss in the conference semi-final.

Since then, the team has graduated ten seniors, of which six were starters; and lost two freshmen that combined for twenty goals in 2011 who have transfered to higher divisions, NCAA Division II Mercy College and Canada's Acadia University. Still, there is a strong core of 12 returning players, 7 of whom have a conference championship plaque in their trophy case.

Junior goalkeeper Camilo Montes (Bayside/Bayside, NY) will be protected by Guillermo Moscoso (Long Island City/Long Island, NY), an outside defender and the teams 2011 Most Improved Player. Moscoso is the sole returning senior and will aim to become the first Berkeley New York soccer player to earn four intercollegiate varsity letters. The center of the defense will be anchored by the 2010 Most Improved Player, Mamadou Diallo (Paul Robeson/Brooklyn, NY), and the outstanding third year player Waqas Afgan. Ifeanyi Ekwermuba (Canarsie/Brooklyn, NY) hopes to recover from his early season injury issues in 2011 and return to his near all-conference 2010 form.

The Knights midfield will see the most changes. Returning are junior starter Ulises Bravo (Graphic Communication Arts/New York, NY), Xhuljano Shala, and freshman standout Joachim Moe. Ibahima Ndayie is sure to make a huge impact on the flanks after enjoying a fruitful second half of the 2011 season. Lucas Pucheta (Dr. Michael Krop/Miami, FL) is also returning after an injury prone season that saw him miss the last part of the season.

"I am excited about the recruits we have secured for the 2012 season as I believe they will strengthen our midfield from which most of our offense is generated," said fourth year head coach Stavros Zomopoulos.

At the top Berkeley will depend heavily on the finishing prowess of Dare Aniyikaye. His explosive skill is expected to propel him towards the top of the conference scoring charts.

The eighteen game 2012 schedule promises to be a tough one. It opens at Fairleigh Dickinson University at Florham on August 31st and features three of last year's USCAA Top 20; Maine-Fort Kent, Briarcliffe College, and SUNY ESF. It also incudes two 2011 NCAA Division III tournament participants (the CUNY and Skyline Champions) Lehman College and SUNY-Maritime.

"We are accustomed to such a tough schedule as we have consistently played one of the most difficult schedules in the tri-state area for the last three years. Our teams prefer to compete against the best," said Zomopoulos.