Among the prized possessions in Drexel’s athletic department is a hidden treasure from 1958.
It’s a wooden trophy with a small medallion showing a man kicking a soccer ball, awarded to the school’s only national championship team.
In 1958, the Drexel men’s soccer team romped to a 12-0 record. Led by three All-Americans, they outscored opponents 76-15. They beat Lehigh 5-2 in the Mid-Atlantic Conference championship.
Following the season, the last before the NCAA started holding a soccer tournament, a panel of coaches and referees unanimously voted Drexel the National Intercollegiate Soccer (NIS) champions.
“No opponent even approached victory over this vaunted team,” The Drexel Triangle reported in its Jan. 23, 1959, edition.
Some referees and other officials considered them the best collegiate soccer team ever, The Triangle reported. In addition, the newspaper said, the team “was respected by opposing squads for their clean play and sportsmanship.”
Co-captains Stanley “Stosh” Dlugosz and Ozzie Jethon, who competed against each other as soccer stars at Philadelphia high schools before coming together at Drexel, led the Dragons. Both forwards were named All-Americans along with goalie Bob Muschek.
Dlugosz, who remains Drexel’s all-time career leader with 49 goals and 115 points, tallied 17 that season. Jethon added 16. The top goal-scorer was Igor Lissy, a sophomore who set a school record that still stands.
His teams finished with records of .500 or better in 24 of his 30 seasons. He also coached 14 All-America players.
“We gave it all we had,” Lissy said in 2014.
As such, that treasured trophy also marks the sports moment judged the greatest in Drexel history.
Above: The Jan. 23, 1959, edition of The Drexel Triangle announces the men’s soccer national championship. (Courtesy Drexel University Archives)
THIS WEEK’S GREATEST MOMENTS
• Monday: Drexel and Duquesne
• Tuesday: East Carolina and East Tennessee State
• Wednesday: Eastern Illinois and Eastern Kentucky
• Thursday: Eastern Michigan and Elon
• Friday: Ferris State and Florida Atlantic