Three Bulls Named AAC Men’s Soccer Players of the Week

Kazuna Takase earns second straight Goalkeeper of the Week honor; Shion Soga named Offensive POW, Ben Kaplan ROW.

IRVING, Texas (Oct. 18, 2021) – Coming off its second straight win on Saturday, the University of South Florida men’s soccer team had a very good day on Monday as the Bulls took home three of the four American Athletic Conference Player of the Week awards. Kazuna Takase earned his second straight Goalkeeper of the Week honor – and the third of his career – while Shion Soga and Ben Kaplan were named Offensive Player of the Week and Rookie of the week, respectively.

South Florida (4-6-1, 2-4- AAC) won its second consecutive match with a 2-1 victory over Memphis on Saturday night at Corbett Stadium.

Takase, a junior from Tomoto, Japan, Takase picked up his second win of the season, and his second straight, with the win over the Tigers. The netminder recorded eight saves on nine shots faced, a season-high for saves, and the most since he recorded a career-best 11 at No. 14 Central Florida on Feb. 20, 2021.

Soga, a freshman from Aichi, Japan, turned in a three-point night for South Florida against Memphis. The midfielder had three shots against the Tigers, all coming on goal, and netted the first goal of the match in the 25’ of play. He also got the assist on the game-winner in the 47’. Soga’s three-point night marks the second of his career and the second of the season. He also tallied a goal and an assist in the season-opener against Jacksonville on Aug. 26. Soga’s Player of the Week award is his second weekly honor from The American of his career.

Kaplan, a freshman from Richmond Hill, Ontario, earned his first career weekly honor from The American after recording his first career goal – and game-winner – against Memphis. A defender, Kaplan converted on a header off a free kick in the 47’, which was his only shot of the night.

The Bulls return to Corbett Stadium on Friday, Oct. 22 at 7 p.m. against No. 24 SMU, closing their short two-match homestand. Following the match with the Mustangs, South Florida will travel east on Interstate-4 for the second edition of the War on I-4 at Central Florida on Oct. 27 at 7 p.m.

Fans can purchase tickets to USF men’s soccer home matches by calling 1-800-GoBulls or at USFBullsTix.com.
 
All home matches this season, will be broadcast live on either Bulls Unlimited or Bulls Unlimited 2 with Darek Sharp on the call. Both stations are available via the iHeart Radio app (search “USF”) and provide static-free quality whether you’re listening on your streaming device, laptop, or desktop.

In addition to Bulls Unlimited, all of USF’s home regular-season matches will be streamed live on the ESPN+ platform. Subscriptions for the ESPN+ app are $6.99 monthly or $69.99 annually and can be packaged with Hulu and Disney+ streaming services. A step-by-step guide for subscribing to ESPN+ is located here.
 
About USF Men’s Soccer

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USF Men’s Soccer competed in the school’s first ever intercollegiate athletic contest on Sept. 25, 1965, beating Florida Southern 4-3. Since then, the oldest program on campus has built a winning tradition, claiming 14 conference championships and making 21 NCAA Tournament appearances, including 3 trips to the elite eight.

The program also has a strong reputation within the professional game and boasts 29 MLS draft picks. Notable alumni include two-time MLS Golden Boot winner Jeff Cunningham, USA 1994 World Cup star Roy Wegerle, and 2013 MLS Cup winner Dom Dwyer.

The Bulls have advanced to the postseason in 18 of the past 20 years, including 12 NCAA Tournament appearances during that period.

USF Soccer concluded the 2020 season with four players earning AAC honors, highlighted by first first-team selection Josue Monge and Salvatore Mazzaferro who was tabbed a second-team selection. Also, Oscar Resano and Brian Schaefer were named to the American Athletic Conference All-Rookie Team. Head coach Bob Butehorn returns to lead USF in his fifth season on the sidelines.

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