HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. – Hofstra University men’s head coach Richard Nuttall has added 10 newcomers to the roster for the fall season.
The class includes five transfers and five freshmen, with four countries represented and three local products joining the team.
The additions of Felix Smith Halle (Oslo, Norway/Ullern VGS/Florida Atlantic), Peter Meyer (Massapequa, N.Y./Massapequa/Army West Point), Alex Dudley (Cleveland, Ohio/St. Edward/St. John’s), Jorey Gacia (Great Neck, N.Y./Great Neck South/Old Westbury), Etienne Botty (Medford, N.Y./Hempstead/Nassau Community College), Lennart Seufert(Bad Koenigshofen, Germany/Ludwig-Erhard-Schule), Guðmundur Jónasson (Reykjavik, Iceland/Commercial College of Iceland), Hendrik Hebbeker (Cologne, Germany/Schiller-Gymnasium Köln), Luca Tausch (Freiburg, Germany/Rotteck-Gymnasium), and Jacob Göker (Hürth, Germany/Albert-Schweitzer-Gymnasium Hürth) will help the team’s depth at every position.
“I’m pleased with the quality of this group,” Nuttall said. “It’s a diverse group that will bring talent to a number of different positions. I am confident in their ability to take on the tall task of making an impact on our season right away.”
A 6-1 sophomore midfielder, Smith Halle started 12 games in the midfield at Florida Atlantic and was the team’s second leading scorer with two goals. Before Florida Atlantic, he played for Ullern Football’s senior and junior teams in Norway for four years, recording 17 goals and 12 assists in 27 games for the junior team as a sophomore and making his debut for the senior team at age 16.
Meyer, a 6-foot junior midfielder, appeared in 32 games, starting three in two seasons at Army West Point, scoring his first career goal as a freshman against Bucknell. A Long Island native, he played varsity soccer at Massapequa, captaining the team as a senior and being named Nassau County Class AA and conference player of the year in 2015. Meyer also earned all-state, all-region, all-county and All-Long Island honors as a senior and helped lead the Chiefs to a state championship in 2013.
A 6-foot goalkeeper, Dudley spent his freshman season at St. John’s University after playing varsity soccer at St. Edward High School in Ohio. He captained the team for two seasons, helping the team to a district championship in 2014. He also played club soccer for Team Challenger FC, backing the team to a USYS national championship in 2017 and to five consecutive USYS Ohio North State Championships. He earned the Golden Glove in 2017.
Garcia, a 6-foot sophomore forward, comes to Hofstra from Old Westbury, where he appeared in 18 games, starting 17. The local product led Old Westbury and the Skyline Conference with 16 goals and 38 points and was named to the All-Skyline Conference First Team. Prior to Old Westbury, he played three years of varsity soccer at Great Neck South and was named the 2016 Conference A1 Player of the Year. Garcia also earned all-county, Newsday All-Long Island, all-state and all-region honors as the conference’s and the Nassau County League’s leading scorer (17 goals, four assists) in 2016. In 2014, he led Conference A1 in scoring (13 goals, five assists) and was an all-county selection. He finished his varsity career with 40 goals, the most in school history.
Another local product, Botty is a 5-6 junior who played 34 games at NCC, finishing his career with 16 goals and 12 assists. Able to slot in at midfield or forward, Botty helped the team to an NJCAA Championship as a freshman and captained the team back to the NJCAA Tournament as a sophomore, earning first-team all-region honors in his second season. Prior to his time at NCC, he played two years of varsity soccer at nearby Hempstead H.S., earning all-conference honors as a freshman and all-county recognition as a sophomore.
Seufert is a 5-10 freshman who can play midfield or defense. He comes to Hofstra after playing 68 games in the highest youth league in Germany. He also played in the country’s second-highest amateur league in Germany and served as the captain of his Under-19 team in 2016.
A 5-9 freshman who can play in the midfield or as a forward, Tausch played for FC Basel U21 of the Promotion League in Germany, scoring two goals in 17 games and logging 667 minutes. He also played for PTSV Jahn Freiburg, TSV Alemannia Freiburg-Zähringen and SC Freiburg.
Jónasson has risen through the ranks with Fimleikafélag Hafnarfjarðar (FH), one of the most elite soccer programs in Iceland. The 6-2 freshman forward led the U19 squad in scoring in 2017 and 2018, accounting for more than 31 percent of the team’s goals in 2017 and helping the team to a national championship.
Hebbekker, a 6-1 freshman midfielder, played for FC Viktoria Köln U-17 and U-19 of the B-Junioren Bundesliga West, logging 669 minutes for the U19 side in 2017-18.
Göker played at the highest national youth level for FC Köln U17 and U19, helping both squads to fourth place finishes. The 6-1 freshman defender was named vice captain in his final season, and helped his teams to a pair of Middle Rhine Cups. He was also named to the U18 All-Star State Team.
The Pride opens the season against Dayton at the Wolstein Classic, hosted by Ohio State, Aug. 24 at 4 p.m.