Men's Soccer Announces Signing Class For 2012 Season
Feb. 24, 2012
MILWAUKEE - Aaron Horvat of Waukesha, Wis., Daniel Lemus of Delevan, Wis., Stuart McBain of Brookfield, Wis., Patrick Ruhland of Mount Horeb, Wis., and Connor Sparrow of St. Louis, Mo., have all signed National Letters of Intent and will play men's soccer at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee next fall.
In addition, Dekonte Donyen of Minneapolis, Minn., has transferred to Milwaukee and is eligible starting with the 2012 spring season.
"We are excited and feel that we have several really good local players who played significant roles for their high school teams and club teams," UWM head coach Chris Whalley said. "We have six guys from the Midwest who we think can all come in and help this program improve and play some significant minutes. They are good all-around student-athletes and we are very pleased with the class and will potentially be adding a piece or two more to it."
Horvat led Waukesha Catholic Memorial High School to the WIAA Division II state championship game each of the past four seasons, winning as a junior while finishing runner-up the other three years. The Classic 8 First-Team All-Conference selection and league player of the year had a team-high 12 goals with four assists as a senior, going 18-6-1. The WSCA All-State honoree was also a Second-Team All-Area selection by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He scored 16 goals as a junior to earn all-state honorable mention honors for the second consecutive season and also plays for the Milwaukee Bavarians U18 squad. Last summer, he was invited to train overseas with Bayer Leverkusen for four weeks.
"Aaron had a great high school career and led his team to the state championship game all four years," Whalley said. "He is a proven winner who is very versatile and can play in a variety of different positions. He is someone whose athleticism and technical ability will give him a chance to play a lot of minutes straightaway."
Lemus was injured much of his senior year at Delevan-Darien High School, scoring one goal and recording an assist before getting hurt. As a junior, he earned Second-Team All-Sothern Lakes Conference honors after scoring nine goals and recording eight assists. He also plays for the Elm Grove Soccer Club U18 team, serving as the team captain the past two years. The club has won the state championship the past three seasons.
"Daniel is an attacking fullback who gets forward well and create chances with his speed and technical ability," Whalley said. "He was injured most of his senior year so he is fighting back from that, but should be fit for his final season with Elm Grove and ready to go here at Milwaukee."
McBain, who also plays for the state-champion Elm Grove Soccer Club, was named team MVP his final season at Brookfield Central High School. The team captain and second-leading goal scorer for his squad, he was named First Team All-Greater Metro Conference, all-state "Best of the Rest" and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel All-Area Second Team. He earned first-team all-league and second-team all-state honors as a junior, in addition to second-team all-league as a sophomore and honorable mention status as a freshman.
"Stuart is an attacking-minded player who can score goals and was a big part of their offense," Whalley said. "He is someone who we feel will really add some quality to our forward play, Stuart is a big strong player, but is technically good to match."
Ruhland was named Wisconsin State Journal Player of the Year after leading Mount Horeb High School to the WIAA Division II State Championship, scoring the winner in the 1-0 final. His team went 20-2-2 as a senior, with Ruhland scoring 34 goals and adding 17 assists to earn Wisconsin Soccer Coaches Association First-Team All-State honors. A three-time All-Northern Badger Conference selection (twice first-team), he finished his career as the school's all-time leading scorer in points (165) and assists (39) while adding 63 goals.
"Patrick had a great high school career and is someone who we first saw at one of our camps," Whalley said. "He is another versatile player who has speed and scored a lot of goals. Ultimately, he can play a lot of different roles here at Milwaukee."
Sparrow comes to Milwaukee from St. John Vianney High School in St. Louis after earning First-Team All-Metro Catholic Conference honors as a goalkeeper his senior campaign. He posted a 1.14 goals against average for his team that finished 18-7-2, finishing second in the league with eight shutouts and 113 saves. As a junior, his team finished runner-up in Class 3 at state. He also competes with the St. Louis Scott Gallagher Academy club team, which he led to nationals a year ago.
"Connor is the starting goalkeeper for one of the top club teams in the country," Whalley said. "He is a quality keeper who will come in and compete with our other two goalkeepers straightaway and add some depth to that position."
Donyen, who goes by the first name of Patrick, is a transfer to Milwaukee from Lee University in Tennessee and will have three years of eligibility remaining. A product of the highly acclaimed Shattuck-St. Mary's Academy School, Donyen was ranked No. 78 by TopDrawerSoccer among best high school players in the country and was picked for its SuperElite Team in 2010. A member of the Olympic Development Program from 2004-07, he was on the U.S. National Youth Team from 2004-08. He was also selected to the Minnesota State High School League Class A Boys Soccer All-Tournament Team.
"Patrick comes in as a transfer mid-year but was someone who was highly recruited out of high school," Whalley said. "He has a new opportunity here and we are looking for him to adapt quickly. He is someone we think can contribute out wide on top for us immediately."