CWRU Men’s Soccer 2019 Season Recap

The 2019 CWRU Men's Soccer Team

Facing a tough schedule in 2019, the Case Western Reserve University men's soccer team finished the year with an overall record of 6-8-4.

The Spartans played four teams during the season that went on to qualify for the Division III NCAA Championship Tournament, posting a 0-3-1 record in such games during the season.

One of the highlights of the year for CWRU was a 2-1 double-overtime win against Adrian College on September 21st. The Bulldogs entered the match with a perfect 6-0 record, before the Spartans ended their undefeated start to the season. After a scoreless first half, CWRU was able to strike first as senior forward Zachary Senft scored at the 66:32 mark. Adrian answered in the 88th minute to even the score at 1-1. The score held for the remainder of regulation and the first overtime period, until Senft was able to hit the match clinching score at the 106:32 mark of the second overtime period to give the Spartans the victory.

CWRU also proved to be a challenge to then sixth-ranked University of Chicago on November 1st, dropping a close 1-0 match to the Maroons in Chicago. The Spartans outshot the Maroons in the game, but Chicago claimed the 1-0 victory on a goal at the 30:01 mark of the first half.

The Spartans battled Ohio Wesleyan University, which made it to the second round at the NCAA Championships, to a 0-0 double-overtime tie on September 14th. CWRU also played a tough UAA home contest against the University of Rochester (N.Y.), which advanced to the second of the NCAA Championships, on October 20th. The Yellowjackets scored with just one second remaining in regulation on a corner kick to stun the Spartans 1-0.

Paced by All-University Athletic Association Second Team selection in junior defender Nathan Ekberg, the Spartans finished the year as a tough defensive-minded team.

Ekberg, who earned All-UAA First Team honors during his sophomore year, led the Spartans defensively as he aided the team to three shutouts during the season. He helped the defense hold opponents to 5.3 shots on goal per game and 13.4 shots per contest. Also contributing offensively, Ekberg recorded one goal and two assists for four points.

In addition, junior midfielder Connor Weber and sophomore midfielder Peter Dernelle earned All-UAA Honorable Mention honors.

During his junior year, Weber contributed a team-high three assists and scored one goal for five points. His one goal came during the Spartans' 1-1 double-overtime tie against Brandeis University on October 12th when he struck a corner kick into the back of the net.

Dernelle started 17 games for the Spartans as a sophomore, and he played a major role on the Spartan defense during the season. He aided the team to three shutouts and also helped the defense hold opponents to 5.3 shots on goal per game. Over his two years as a Spartan, Dernelle has appeared in 39 games, including 33 starts.

Offensively, junior Seldon Magruder led the squad with 13 points on a team-high six goals and one assist. Senft finished first on the team with 64 shots, as he contributed three goals and three assists for nine points.

Head Coach Brandon Bianco concluded his seventh season at Case Western Reserve with a 61-47-21 overall record over his career.

In addition to the team's success on the field, the Spartans excelled in the classroom as well in 2019. The squad received the United Soccer Coaches Team Academic Award for the 16th-consecutive year, as the Spartans posted a 2018-19 team grade point average of 3.40. Thirteen members of the squad also earned All-Academic honors: junior Matt DePeppe, Dernelle, Ekberg, junior Andrew Engelmeyer, sophomore Charlie Fink, sophomore Jacob Hall, senior Kyle Lewis, Magruder, sophomore Brendan Murray, senior Chas Novitsky, Senft, senior Garrett Winter and senior Brian Woo.

The Spartans earned the following honors during the 2019 season:

All-University Athletic Association

Nathan Ekberg

Second Team

Liberty Township, Ohio / Lakota East

Connor Weber 

Honorable Mention

Columbus, Ohio / The Wellington School

Peter Dernelle

Honorable Mention

Alexandria, Va. / Gonzaga College


The following were the 2019 statistical leaders for the Spartans:


Seldon Magruder



Zachary Senft, Connor Weber



Seldon Magruder 


Game Winning Goals

Seldon Magruder



Zachary Senft


Shots on Goal

Zachary Senft



Charlie Fink, Jackson Kallen 



Jackson Kallen



Charlie Fink