DUSC has a strong presence in the College of Staten Island Men’s Soccer team. The CSI Men’s program currently has 5 players and 1 coach who are DUSC alumni. Coach Alex Cuba, our B2003 Blue Head Coach, is the Assistant Coach for the CSI program. He shared with us some info on this past 2018 season and how our former players are doing at the DIII environment.
The first Alumni we checked up on was Bryant Navarro, who had himself an outstanding season. The forward led the team in scoring and points, led the conference in scoring and in points, was the 7th highest scorer in the country, a 1st team All-Conference player, and a 3rd team player All-Region. Quite a mouth full. Bryant finished the season 4th for all time goals in one season for the CSI program. Keep in mind this is only Bryant's sophomore season.
Next up on the DUSC Alumni roster is Michael Arellanes. Michael is a 3 year starter and has been an integral piece for the program. Arellanes combines his versatility, skill, and tremendous knowledge of the game to allow himself to be used all around the midfield; no easy task.
The 3rd DUSC Alumni, Chris Li, is another individual that fits the utility mold. Chris is versatile, strong, and skillful. As Cuba described, Chris plays the game the right way and is always willing to put the team first. In fact, Cuba shared that Michael and Chris are best of friends and have been a tremendous help in instilling the culture desired at CSI. We’d like to think that friendship was formed all those years playing at DUSC.
Macki Dougoune is the 4th DUSC Alumni and was the CUNYAC conference rookie of the year. He too works in the midfield with Michael and Chris. Macki is, “a force to be reckoned with as he dominates the center of the park on any given day.” Cuba expressed that Macki is the epitome of the type of player CSI seeks out when they recruit. Simply put, Macki is a great kid with a huge passion for the game of soccer. He continued to share that Macki’s willingness to put the team above all else is a quality every player can aspire to. In fact, Cuba’s favorite memory from this season was seeing Macki show up for preseason. “Being able to see his goal of playing collegiate ball finally come to fruition was fantastic to me. I wanted everyone to see how talented this young man was and there he was jogging in for his first day of preseason, wide eyed and smiling right before sprints started” added Cuba.
Our 5th and final DUSC Alumni is Ryan Layman. Ryan was the captain for CSI this past year. He is a 3 year starter and also a 2x All-Conference team player. Cuba noted that cool, calm and collected is the easiest way to describe Ryan. “He’s smart, incredibly talented, self-motivated, a true leader and holds himself accountable. Ryan has all the qualities the CSI program looks for in an athlete and he's an even better person than he is a player” praised Cuba.
Just as it is valued at DUSC, culture is central to the CSI program. Their goal is to bring in athletes that understand the commitment not only that soccer requires, but also that the college requires on the academic side. The CSI ask is that their players self-motivate in all aspects of their lives. This hunger is what drove the team to improve their team from a 10-7-2 record in the 2017 season to a 15-4-1 record in the 2018 season. They also to reached the finals of the CUNYAC. While they may have lost in the conference finals to Baruch College in dramatic fashion, their hunger remains. Coach Cuba says that without a doubt you can expect to see the players putting in the work in the weight room or on the futsal courts this winter.
Images courtesy of the College of Staten Island Athletic Department.