Canisius College men's soccer head coach Dermot McGrane announced the addition of five players to the Golden Griffin program on Friday. Nicoló Baudo, Mitch Cancilla, Charlie Cosentino, Derek Dedman and Francesco Strangio are all set to wear the Blue and Gold, starting with the 2013 campaign.
"We are delighted with the group of players that we have joining us for the 2013 season," McGrane said. "We have addressed some very specific needs within our team, while adding considerable depth to the roster."
Baudo joins the Griffs after spending the 2012 season at Nyack College. In his one year with the Warriors, the midfielder totaled 10 points, four goals and two assists. The Genova, Italy native was also a member of the Under-18 Italian National Team and was selected to the Under-18 World Cup. In addition, he spent eight years at U.C. Sampdoria, helping the squad to a sliver medal at the 2008 National Championship and a bronze medal the following season.
"Nico is a technically and tactically gifted player who has the ability to control a game from the center of the field," McGrane said. "His understanding of the game will bring great leadership to our team and we expect great things from him next year."
A defender, Cancilla spent four years with the U.S. Soccer Development Academy, playing with the Empire Revolution. The Grand Island, N.Y. native was also a member of the New York West ODP for three years and the Region I ODP for two seasons. Cancilla helped Canisius High School to the Monsignor Martin Championship in 2011 and was named Defensive MVP with the Crusaders, while also collecting first-team All-Catholic accolades on three occasions.
"Mitch is a big, tough, hard-working player who know how to use his body to good effect," McGrane said. "He has a great first touch and his distribution is excellent. He has the ability to play in a number of positions and his versatility will make him a very important part of our team."
Cosentino is listed as the fifth-best prospect in New York by TopDrawerSoccer.com and was also consistently ranked among the top 150 nationally by the website. Also a member of the Empire Revolution, Cosentino played three seasons at Irondequoit High School. He led the Eagles to a section title, while totaling 21 goals and 13 assists during his career. Cosentino collected all-state, all-region, all-county and all-league accolades in addition to Team MVP honors in 2011 at Irondequoit.
"Charlie has deceptive pace, a great work rate on the field and his movement off the ball is very good," McGrane said. "He also has a nose for the goal and has the ability to finish any chance he gets."
Selected to the ESPN Rise Indiana All-State Team, Dedman was a member of the Indiana Fire Academy for three seasons, while playing for the Indiana ODP squad for four years. He earned three letters at Noblesville High School, totaling six goals and 20 assists and leading the Millers to three sectional titles and two regional championships.
"Derek is a very composed player who can fit in as a holding midfielder or anywhere in the defense," McGrane said. "His possession rate is very high and he doesn't give the ball away very often. Derek is also a fierce defender and strong in the tackle, which makes him a great fit for our team."
Strangio is the third member of the Empire Revolution to join the Griffs in the fall, playing with the team from 2010 to 2013. He also helped the Empire United to the 2010 New York West Cup Championship, while also playing four seasons at Niagara Wheatfield High School. Totaling 10 goal and 10 assists during his career, Strangio collected second-team All-Western New York and first-team all-league honors.
"Francesco is a technically gifted player," McGrane said. "When you combine this with his vision and awareness on the field, you get a very dynamic midfielder that will make an immediate impact on our team."
The five newcomers are set to join seven starters and 19 letterwinners returning from the 2012 team that completed one of the most successful seasons in the program's history. The team received votes in the national poll for the first time in school history and reached as high as second in the NSCAA North Atlantic poll. In addition, Canisius finished the campaign with eight wins (tied for the most in school history against Division I competition) and over .500 for the first time since 1987.