SAN RAFAEL, Calif. - Four captains will lead the Dominican University of California for the 2016 season. Cody Bernstein, Alex Keuilian, Michael Manfredi and Max Kaehler were all unanimously selected by team vote. These four will look to guide the Penguins to their first ever WCLL title and a trip to the MCLA tournament in their first season being eligible for playoffs.
Bernstein, a senior midfielder, was a member of the two-time WILA conference championship team and was named Dominican Scholar Athlete of the year for the 2015-2016 season. Bernstein hails from Kirkland, Wash. In his first season in the MCLA, he tallied 28 points and has totaled 115 points in his career.
Keuilian played his high school ball at the storied Foothill High program in Orange, Calif. Keuilian was also a member of the two-time WILA conference championship team. In his first season in the MCLAm, he was a shutdown defender for the Penguins and had 12 ground balls. Alex will be a key leader for the Penguins on defense.
Manfredi is a sophomore midfielder who played his high school ball at Faith Lutheran in Las Vegas, Nev. In his freshman season, Manfredi racked up six goals and seven assists while securing 37 ground balls. He also served as a key member of the Penguins faceoff unit. Manfredi will help lead the Penguins young offense and faceoff unit in the 2016 season.
Kaehler, a junior attackman, came to Dominican last year after playing at Finger Lakes (N.Y.) Community College. Kaehler is a strong leader with a military background, and will be an important member of the attack unit. Kaehler will be a key part of the Penguins offense and will look to lead the team on and off the field.
Dominican has constructed a tough slate in their first year eligible for the WCLL playoffs. The Penguins will be road warriors during the 2016 season with only four home games. This is also the most games the Penguins have played since joining the MCLA.
Dominican starts the season with three scrimmages to prepare for the tough slate ahead. The Penguins play old NCAA Division II rival Notre Dame De Namur to start the year and then take on WCLL Division II powerhouse Sierra Nevada College. Lastly the Penguins take on PNCLL Division II Western Oregon to round out their spring scrimmages.
The Penguins open up the regular season against Oregon, one of the top teams in the PNCLL. With a new coach and a new roster, this will be a great season opener for both teams. Dominican opens up conference play at home against reigning WCLL champion Stanford. The following weekend the Penguins take on Nevada-Reno, which is newly added to Division I.
The Penguins then play three SLC teams over five days: Loyola Marymount at home and then USC and UC Santa Barbara in Southern California. Dominican ends the month of March with two tough conference games over five days. They will take on Cal Poly at home, which will be a Veterans’ game benefiting Mission 22. From there, the Penguins travel to crosstown rival Sonoma State.
The Penguins start the month of April on the road against WCLL Division II Humboldt State. The next three weekends feature big conference games. First the Penguins take on Chico State followed by Cal- Berkeley at home for the Golden Bears senior game. The Penguins end the regular season at Santa Clara University under the lights.
The Penguins are looking to have a great 2016 season under new head coach Sammy Vogel-Seidenberg and hope to make the WCLL playoffs in their first season being eligible. The Penguins also look to make an impact in the MCLA and play in their first MCLA National Tournament powered by Under Armour. It will be a tough road ahead, but the Penguins have talent and leadership to get them where they would like to be.