WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 13, 2008
Men’s soccer picked to finish second in A-Sun preseason poll
Tony Taylor earned preseason all-conference honors, despite not having played in the A-Sun yet.
Tony Taylor earned preseason all-conference honors, despite not having played in the A-Sun yet.
The JU men’s soccer team will not open camp until Thursday, but expectations are high as the Dolphins were picked to finish second and win the conference tournament in the 2008 Atlantic Sun preseason coaches’ poll.

Campbell, who edged out JU to win the A-Sun Tournament in 2007, was slated for finish first for the second straight year with 95 points and seven five-place votes. The Dolphins were seven points behind the Camels with 88 and had two first place votes. Stetson (84), UNF (57) and Florida Gulf Coast (49) made up the rest of the top five. Belmont, Lipscomb, USC Upstate, East Tennessee State and Mercer rounded out the rest of the poll.

“It’s exciting for us to be picked to finish in the top two,” said JU head coach Mike Johnson. “Obviously, that is our expectation level now after coming off the regular season championship and losing such a close game in the tournament final. We have a healthy respect for every team in the conference and we will have our work cut out for us every day. Most of the conference games are decided by one goal and hopefully we are on the good side of those one goal games.”

Sophomore forward Tony Taylor, a transfer from USF, was named to the A-Sun preseason all-conference team despite not playing a match for the Dolphins. As a freshman, Taylor notched four goals and an assist for nine points in 20 games with the Bulls.

“Taylor is a dynamic player and a lot of people knew about him,” Johnson said. “He was a good pick up for us. Obviously losing Anton (Axelsson) as the “Player of the Year” was hard but, we feel that we have replaced with him with the type of player that can make an impact for our team. Other coaches in our conference have a healthy respect for him based on what he has done as a youth player and during first year of college.”

The Dolphins will have a week of camp before hosting Tampa for an exhibition match on Aug. 19 at the Ashley Sports Complex. Kickoff is set for 5 p.m.