From the report of the Sports Department of the University of Pittsburgh

Following their fall season success, five University of Pittsburgh soccer players were inducted into the Top 100 Preseason Watch List by TopDrawerSoccer and into the top DI preseason XI teams en route to spring.

The national top 100 preseason watchlist for men, which includes sophomores, juniors and seniors, features the most senior college soccer players in the country and is updated weekly. Two players were named in the top 15 with sophomores Valentine’s Day Christmas at No. 8 and Veljko Petkovic No. 15. PhD student Jasper Löeffelsend and the second year Arturo Ordoñez came in 50th and 71st respectively.

In addition to the Top 100 Preseason Watch List also Noel, Petkovic and Freshman Filip Mirkovic were inducted into the men’s DI Preseason Best XI Teams, with Noel winning the First Team, the Petkovic Second Team and the Mirkovic Freshman Team.

Noel, a native of Niort from France, finished the fall 2020 campaign as one of the top scorers in the country and led the Panther offensive in terms of goals, points, shots and shots on goal. Noel ranked first in the country in goals per game (1.14) and first in total goals (8). He also finished falling into the top 5 in several categories, including winning goals (T-2. – 2), points per game (2 – 2.57), shooting accuracy (2 – 7.00), shots on goal per game (2 ). 2. – 2.00) and total points (2. – 18).

Petkovic from Nis, Serbia, finished the fall in second place in goals (5) and shots on goal (11) and came third in assists (3). His total goals and points were ranked fourth in the nation, while his 0.38 assists per game were ranked eighth. Petkovic has played two multi-score games this season, most recently in the ACC Championship semi-finals against Notre Dame on November 18.

The native of Frankfurt Löeffelsend recorded six assists in the fall and an average of 0.86 assists per game, both good for second place in the country. Löeffelsend scored three assists in a game on October 10 against Virginia Tech, a number that is second in school history for a single game.

Ordoñez finished the fall with a goal and two assists. The goal was a game winner in overtime on October 18 in Virginia # 5. The Salou native was recognized by the ACC on September 28 and received the ACC Defensive Player of the Week honors.

Mirkovic from Belgrade, Serbia, scored a goal and an assist for the Panthers midfielder in the fall. Mirkovic recorded five shots, two shots on goal and 631 minutes.

Pitt welcomes defending champions Georgetown to their home for an exhibition game on Saturday, February 13th at 3pm. No fans are currently allowed in the Petersen Sports Complex.

John Krysinsky has reported on football and other sports for various publications and media for many years. He is also the author of ‘Miracle on the Mon’ – a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC that chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium. The narrative resulted in a notable game that sparked a spark for the franchise. John has reported sports for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports and Pittsburgh Sports Report, worked as a color commentator on broadcasts on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup games in the United States. Krysinsky also served as Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to their first successful seasons and playoff berths (1996-98). Head Coach of the North Catholic Boys (2007-08), Deputy Head Coach of the Boys of the Shady Side Academy (2009-2014).