“Chris and Colin both have big game experience on the club level and I believe they should challenge our returning goalkeepers for a chance to start,” Thompson said.
Devine has been Thompson’s No. 1 goalkeeper at Seacoast United for the past three seasons. The six-foot, 167-pound keeper will join club teammate and recent signee Joe Corsello (York, Maine) for another four years of playing together. Devine helped backstop a team that won three consecutive NH state championships, was a 2006 USYSA region-1 finalist and USL Super Y League national finalist as well as a No. 8 national club team ranking. Devine was also a member of the NH Olympic Development program and a participant in the 2007 Super Y League National Camp. While Devine had opportunities to go to college out of state, he chose to continue his playing career in New Hampshire.
“I look forward to coaching Chris for another four years,” Thompson added. “He has good hands, reads the game well and can make the big save. Chris is one the best goalkeeping prospects ever to come out of New Hampshire.”
O’Donnell was named All-Western Mass, All-League and All-State as a goalkeeper for the Minnechaug Regional High School soccer team. In his senior year, O’Donnell, at six-foot-one, 195-pounds, posted nine shutouts and allowed just 14 goals in 19 games. He is also a three-time state champion and MVP team member of the Western United FC. With Western in 2006, O’Donnell only gave up one goal in all of the state cup and regional tournament games. Ironically, the goal was scored by Thompson’s Seacoast United in the regional semifinals.
“I am very excited in Colin’s decision to be a Wildcat,” Thompson said. “He has exceptional distribution, a great presence and very good communication skills. My club team has faced Colin many times over the past few years and he has certainly won his fair share of battles.”
The men’s soccer program is coming off a 12-5-3 season including 6-2-1 in the America East. The team, whose record was its best since 1994, made it to the semifinals of the conference tournament. The Wildcats finished fifth in the nation in goals against average (0.57) and lose five players to graduation. UNH men’s soccer now has four student-athletes in its signing class.
“I am confident that these two keepers can continue our strong tradition of goalkeeping,” said Thompson. “Chris and Colin are first class individuals and I know they will work hard together to make each other better. I am looking forward to a very competitive preseason at this position.”