Seattle University head men's soccer coach Pete Fewing has announced that eight student-athletes have officially confirmed that they will be attending the school and joining the Redhawk program.
"I give credit to (assistant coach) Ed (Moore) and (former assistant coach) Anthony (Sardon) for bringing in a good group of guys. You always want to get better with your recruiting. I am pleased with what I have seen from these guys and think they can contribute immediately. They will help us improve, and some of them will challenge for starting spots right away," Fewing said.
Enrique Bello (Caracas, Venezuela) was a member of the Venezuelan U20 National Team in 2010. The 5'11", 150-pound forward participated in the Darlington School Soccer Academy in Rome, Ga., helping his team win the Disney Showcase last February.
"Enrique brings some versatility to the team, as he can be either a left midfielder or an attacking player. He can go forward and score goals, but he is also good on the left wing serving balls into the scoring area," Moore said.
Jordan Bingham (Ontario, Calif.) helped Damien High School win the league title, earning all-league as well as team MVP honors. The 5'11", 155-pound center midfielder has played for Albion SC in San Diego over the past three years, helping his squad reach the national championship match two years in a row.
"Jordan is a solid player, another center midfielder that will help our depth. He fits the bill for what we want in our players: a good soccer player as well as a good student who will fit in well within the culture we are creating here," said Moore.
Hamza Haddadi (Shoreline, Wash.) has been a two-year letterwinner for Shorewood High School, scoring 11 goals in 10 matches and earning All-Wesco honors during the 2011 season. After several years with Emerald City, he moved to the Crossfire Academy, leading his club team in scoring every year and helping the squad reach the finals of the State Cup.
"Hamza is fun, has bite, makes really good runs, and is a good goal scorer. He is going to get better, as he is growing into his body, plus he is not afraid to crash the box and run into people. I like him a lot," Fewing said.
Joe Mancini (Redmond, Wash.) was a four-year starter for Eastside Catholic High School, earning captain status in his senior season. The 6'2", 185-pound center midfielder has also won numerous honors both individually and among his teammates with Eastside FC, plus he participated in the Olympic Development Program from 2008 to 2011.
"Joe will join us in the spring of 2013. He will be a defensive-type player, as he can win balls in the air and is physical. He comes from a good soccer background, having played for both Eastside FC and the Sounders Academy," Fewing said.
Jose Merlo (San Marcos, Calif.) was a three-year starter for San Pasqual High School, helping the Eagles reach the CIF finals in 2012. Merlo, a 5'9", 152-pound defender, also played club soccer for Albion SC, winning the Cal South National Cup two years in a row and earning team MVP honors in 2010.
"Jose is good. He reads the game well and has good speed. He will be on the backline either in the center or on the right side for us. He comes from one of the top club programs in the country," Fewing said.
Michael Roberts (Issaquah, Wash.) helped Issaquah High School to a 12-3-3 record in 2011 with 13 goals and 13 assists during the season, earning first team all-league and honorable mention all-state recognition. The 5'11", 155-pound midfielder/forward has played club soccer for both Issaquah SC and Eastside FC, helping his team win the Washington state championship in 2010.
"Michael is a talented player and a competitor. He has the ability to be very creative with the ball and can create opportunities for himself and others," Fewing said. "He is a hard worker, and an outstanding student. He is a terrific young man that will fit in both on the field and in the classroom."
Jeff Rose (Carmichael, Calif.) continues the pipeline between Seattle U and Jesuit High School in Sacramento, helping the Marauders post a 55-2-4 record over the past two seasons. The 5'9", 150-pound forward finished his high school career with 43 goals and 70 assists, plus he has been ranked as one of the top U17 and U18 players in the country during his time with Cap FC.
"Jeff is coming off an injury and we are going to evaluate him when he gets here at the start of the season," Fewing said. "He is a smart kid. He was a high school All-American, so we know the potential is there."
Austin Sweeney (Federal Way, Wash.) helped Todd Beamer High School reach the state playoffs in three straight seasons from 2009 to 2011. After earning 30 goals and 28 assists in three years of high school soccer, the 5'9", 150-pound center midfielder has played for the Seattle Sounders Academy since 2010.
"Austin is very good with restarts. He can challenge for a starting spot right away," said Fewing. "He is scrappy and skillful, plus he has good tactical awareness."
The Seattle University men's soccer team will once again compete in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation in the 2012 season.