Feb. 7, 2007
BERKELEY - The California men's soccer program signed a talented crop of four recruits, Golden Bears head coach Kevin Grimes announced today. The freshman Class of 2007, with forward Davis Paul, goalkeeper Jordan Bethke, midfielder Anthony "A.J." Soares and forward Andrew Wiedeman, will make its debut next fall. Along with the players who signed today, an additional newcomer, freshman midfielder Servando Carrasco, entered school this spring and is eligible to play next season. Grimes' signees all hail from the state of California.
"We are very excited to have all five of these players join our program," Grimes said. "Their talent and skill level is outstanding and they all come from high-quality club programs. We look forward to announcing 3-4 more players in the next couple of days as their paperwork gets in the system."
Carrasco, from San Diego, played with the San Diego Surf Soccer Club for 10 years as an offensive and defensive midfielder. The Saint Augustine High School product spent last fall training in Buenos Aires, Argentina, at CEFAR (Centro Entrenamiento Futbol Alto Rendimiento). He has played in several elite level youth tournaments around the country, including the Dallas Cup and Nike Cup.
Paul, a 2006 NSCAA/adidas boys youth All-American, was selected to the prestigious adidas Elite Soccer Program (ESP) and was one of 35 players chosen to play in the ESP All-Star Game in 2006. A three-time (2004-06) state ODP champion with the Cal South ODP team, Paul scored the gamewinning goal that gave Cal South a national championship in 2005.
He played at Arsenal FC with current Cal freshman Hector Jimenez, leading Arsenal to three national titles in three years at the USYSA National Championships as well as three regional titles in three years. Arsenal won its most recent national title last summer, capturing the U-17 Don Greer Cup. At the 2005 USYSA National Championships, Paul earned the adidas Golden Boot after his club won the U-16 Niotis Cup. Arsenal is the first boys' club in U.S. Soccer history to win three straight USYSA National Championships.
Bethke, a goalie, plays for the Pateadores soccer club of Southern California. In the 2006 Premier Soccer League Season, the under-19 Pateadores were champions of the Southern Section, allowed the least number of goals and ended up as one of the top two teams in California. In the 2004-05 season, his U-17 Pateadores team won the U.S. Club Soccer National Championship, allowing just one goal during the national tournament.
Soares, who has also played in the back, has played for the Surf club for 10 years, helping the Surf win a regional club championship and become a national finalist in 2006. His club named Soares the Surf Player of the Year in 2000. A member of the Cal South ODP team from 2001-06, he was a national champion with the Cal South ODP 88 team. He helped Cal South with a national state cup championship in 1999 and 2001.
Wiedeman, who has captained Mustang United for the past three years and is the only one of the Cal newcomers from Northern California, was selected to the Super Y-League national team in 2006. He played on the Cal North State ODP and Region IV teams for the past four years and captained his most recent team. A four-year letterwinner and starter at California High School in San Ramon, Wiedeman was a first-team all-EBAL pick as a junior.