"Bates soccer has a lot to offer the student who wants a program that demands excellence," says Purgavie. "This is not a program for an average player. We offer athletes the opportunity to test their abilities against the best Division III teams in New England and against some of the best players in the country."
The junior class will look to provide the team's scoring punch in 2001. Forward Brian Luoma (Virginia Beach, Va.), the team's top returning scorer, enters the campaign with as one of the fastest players in school history to reach the 10-goal plateau. Midfielder Mike Masi (York, Maine) was Bates' top play-maker in 2000, recording three assists, while senior Drew Weymouth (Holden, Mass.) recorded five helpers in his rookie season. In the backfield, junior Jeff Critchlow (Carlisle, Mass.) will miss departed starters Mark Warner (Southwick, Mass.) and Walter Shicko (Rocky Hill, Conn.), but senior Dan Spector (Framingham, Mass.), is one of the top goalies in the region, earning All-New England honors in 1999 as the Bobcats set a school-record for most shutouts in a season.
Bates plays a 14-game schedule, including nine NESCAC league games before the conference tournament. Preseason work begins Sept. 1. Support for the Bobcats is very strong; the Leahey Field bleachers and sidelines are frequently packed with Bates fans. Even at away games, it is not uncommon for Bates fans to outnumber the opponents' partisans. In 2001, the Bobcats will inaugurate a brand new field on Lafayette Street at the site of Bates' new track and field facility.
George Purgavie (email@example.com) has been head coach at
Bates since 1983. An All-Mid-Atlantic goalie at West Chester University in Pennsylvania,
he was selected for the 1973 East-West Senior Bowl and went on to play for the
Connecticut Wildcats of the American Soccer League. Before coming to Bates,
Purgavie served as an assistant coach at Boston College, the University of South
Carolina and Middlebury College. He holds an 'A' coaching license from the U.S.
Soccer Federation and serves on the National Academy Staff of the National Soccer
Coaches Association of America (NSCAA). Purgavie spent the spring 1999 semester
on sabbatical studying soccer academies worldwide for the NSCAA, working closely
with the Dutch Soccer Federation.