M. Soccer Welcomes Eight for 2016

Christian Onalfo is one of three newcomers with national team experience.
Feb. 9, 2016

SAN DIEGO – San Diego State men’s soccer head coach Lev Kirshner has announced the signing of eight players, including two National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-Americans, three student-athletes with national team experience and two transfers boasting all-conference honors for the 2016 season.

Brandon Butler, Morgan Graham, Debray Hollimon, Emil Kjellker, Spencer Madden and Christian Onalfo will arrive at Montezuma Mesa this summer, while Pablo Pelaez and Michael Sauers are on campus and currently competing with the Aztecs for their spring campaign. 

“We are extremely pleased with our signings for the upcoming season,” Kirshner said. “These incoming student-athletes will address many of the issues we have witnessed in our most recent teams. Last season, the squad significantly closed the gap on our Pac-12 competition and with the addition of this 2016 class, we expect a rapid return to the success we have come to know.”

In 2015, San Diego State notched its best record since 2011 at 8-8-3, wrapping up the campaign with a thrilling 1-0 double overtime win at home over No. 16 UCLA. Kyle Adams, a College Soccer News All-Freshman third team honoree, and Matt Callahan earned NSCAA All-Far West Region third team honors, while three Aztecs garnered All-Pac-12 recognition, with forward Rene Reyes collecting second team honors, and goalkeeper Adam Allmaras and defender Travis Nicklaw picking up honorable mention accolades. Additionally, Allmaras, junior midfielder Casey Macias and senior defenders Casey Phillips and Mark Revell were named Academic All-Pac-12. 

San Diego State recently kicked off its spring slate with a 1-0 loss to Real Salt Lake, shutting out the Major League Soccer (MLS) team for 70 minutes before a strike by Javier Morales, the club’s leading scorer in 2015. The Aztecs’ spring campaign continues with a match on Feb. 12 at LA Galaxy II of the United Soccer League (USL) and a contest atop SDSU Sports Deck against Liga MX’s Los Xolos Sub-20 on Feb. 16.  The Aztecs then visit UC Riverside on Feb. 27 and host Point Loma Nazarene on March 16 and USD on March 19. All upcoming matches are slated to begin at 7 p.m.

Brandon Butler
FR | D | 6-0 | 170 | Encinitas, Calif. | La Costa Canyon HS | Albion SC

Member of Cal South ODP, winning the ODP National Championship … Two-year varsity captain at La Costa Canyon High … Avocado West League second team honoree as a junior … Captain of Albion SC.

Morgan Graham
FR | D | 6-1 | 165 | Edmonton, Alberta | Archbishop O’Leary | FC Edmonton

Member of the Alberta Select Team … Played with the O’Leary Soccer Academy, which also produced SDSU alum Jordan Ongaro ... Participated in the Canadian National Training Centre.

Debray Hollimon
JR | MF | 6-4 | 190 | Wichita, Kansas | Wichita Northwest HS / CSU San Bernadino | Sporting KC USDDA

Played two seasons at Cal State San Bernadino, starting 24 of his 27 matches played and notching two three goals and four assists in that time … 2014 California Collegiate Athletic Association Male Athlete of the Year and Freshman of the Year after scoring three goals and dishing out two assists … All-state second team and all-metro first team honoree his senior season at Wichita Northwest.

Emil Kjellker
FR | MF | 6-0 | 175 | Hollviken, Sweden | Malmoe Borgarskola | Trelleborgs FF

Competed with the U-18 Swedish Men’s National Team … Played in the UEFA Youth Champions League with Malmo FF U-19 … Plays with Trelleborgs FF in Division 1 – Södra.

Spencer Madden
FR | D | 5-9 | 155 | Dana Hills, Calif. | Dana Hills HS | West Coast FC

Member of Cal South ODP, winning the ODP National Championship … Four-year varsity player at Dana Hills High … Team-leading scorer his junior season … West Coast FC team captain … Also competed in track and field for Dana Hills.

Christian Onalfo
FR | D | 6-2 | 175 | Redondo Beach, Calif. | LA Galaxy HS | LA Galaxy USSDA

Plays with LA Galaxy USSDA and was called up by LA Galaxy II of the USL in 2015 … Called into the U-18 and U-20 United States Men’s National Team camps, representing the United States at the 2015 Stevan Vilotic-Cele Tournament in Serbia with the U-20 Men’s National Team … Won the 2014 USSDA National Championship with LA Galaxy USSDA.

Pablo Pelaez
RS-FR | MF | 5-8 | 145 | San Diego, Calif. | Mt. Everest Academy | San Diego Surf USSDA

Enrolled at San Diego State for the Spring 2016 semester ... Has landed on the rosters of the U-18, U-17 and U-16 United States National Teams … 2014 NSCAA All-American … Top Drawer Soccer (No. 27) and College Soccer News (No. 26) top-30 recruit.

Michael Sauers
SR | F | 5-10 | 155 | Glen Arm, Md. | Archbishop Curley / Maryland | DC United USSDA

Enrolled at San Diego State for the Spring 2016 semester ... Appeared in 54 matches for Maryland over three seasons … All-ACC Freshman Team honoree in 2013 after notching five goals and an assist … Ranked No. 32 following the 2013 campaign in Top Drawer Soccer's Men's Freshmen Top 100 ... Named to the ACC Championship All-Tournament Team that season … NSCAA All-American, All-South first team, all-region, all-state, all-metro and All-MIAA his senior season at Archbishop Curley.

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