SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – The profile of the Cal Poly men's soccer program's incoming 2010 freshman class was ratcheted up recently as three future Mustangs earned ESPN RISE Winter All-America honors.
Highlighting the triumvirate set to make their Alex G. Spanos Stadium debuts in August was midfielder George Malki (Scottsdale, Ariz./Pinnacle HS), who was selected to the 12-player ESPN RISE All-America first team. Malki, a former United States Under-17 Men's National Team player and current member of the under-18 player pool, scored 19 goals and notched 10 assists in helping Pinnacle HS to a 25-1-1 record and an Arizona state championship this past season. Malki (above), a member of the Region IV Olympic Development Program, was also selected to the Arizona Republic All-State first team this past year.
Selected to the ESPN RISE All-America third team were defenders Connor Drechsler (Temecula, Calif./Great Oak HS) and Chris Fisher (Menlo Park, Calif./Saint Francis HS). A three-year letterwinner at Great Oak HS and program captain during his junior and seniors seasons, Drechsler assisted the Wolfpack to a quarterfinal round showing during the 2010 California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section Division III tournament. The captain of Saint Francis HS, Fisher helped lead the Lancers to the 2010 CIF Central Coast Section Division II championship.
Among the 36 players named to the three ESPN RISE All-America teams, Cal Poly's three selections matched Southern Methodist for the highest total of any Division I program.
Cal Poly's incoming freshman class also includes forwards Karson Payton (Provo, Utah/Timpview HS) and Justin Hill (Boise, Idaho/Boise HS) and midfielder Nolan Moore (New Westminster, B.C./Vancouver Whitecaps FC). Fifth-year head coach Paul Holocher finalized his seven-player incoming class in April by inking forward Ronald Medrano Williams (San Jose, Costa Rica/L.D. Alajuelense), who was one of 24 players invited to train with the U.S. U-20 Men's National Team between June 27 and July 5.
Cal Poly, which matched program records a year ago with six Big West victories and a second-successive second-place finish in the conference standings, opens its 2010 regular season at Denver on Friday, Sept. 3.