Updated: November 03, 2011 2:11 pm (ET)
by America East Communications
CAMBRIDGE, MASS. -- After capturing its conference-best 11th men’s soccer regular-season title, Boston University is the recipient of three major America East awards, while second-place Stony Brook University received two and reigning champion UMBC earned one. The annual award winners, along with the all-conference teams, were determined in a vote by the league’s head coaches and announced this afternoon.
A year removed from being named Rookie of Year, Boston U. sophomore Kelvin Madzongwe earned Defender of the Year honors while teammate Dominique Badji became the fourth Terrier in the last five years to take home the Rookie of the Year award. The tandem’s coaching staff, led by Neil Roberts, earned Coaching Staff of the Year accolades for the second straight season. Stony Brook’s Berian Gobeil Cruz and Leonardo Fernandes are the Striker and Midfielder of the Year, respectively, while UMBC’s Dan Louisignau is the Goalkeeper of the Year.
Madzongwe, also a first-team defender after earning second-team honors as a freshman, is just the second underclassmen to win the award since it was instituted in 2002. The center back leads a defensive unit that is tied for the league lead with just 17 goals allowed in as many games (1.00 gapg). Madzongwe, who has played in 15 of Boston U.’s 17 games this season, also scored a goal against Binghamton on Oct. 30.
Badji, a freshman forward, also earned second-team all-conference recognition after racking up five goals and 13 points during the regular season. Those totals are not only a team best, they also are tied for third and seventh among league leaders, respectively. Badji found the back of the net when his team needed it most, scoring a league-high four game-winning goals, all of which came during conference play.
Roberts, who is in his 27th season at Boston U., led his team to a 9-8-0 record and a 5-2-0 mark in America East play to earn the program’s 11th regular-season title during his tenure. Roberts, who is trying to lead Boston U. to its 13th conference crown, is a seven-time America East Coach of the Year and has mentored 14 major award winners during his tenure. He is assisted by Scott Black, Francis Okaroh and Dan Colwell.
Gobeil Cruz, a junior forward, is the top finisher for a Stony Brook squad that averages a league-best 1.41 goals per game. He is tied for the league lead with seven goals, four of which came during conference play. Also a first-team all-league forward, Gobeil Cruz is tied for third with three game-winning goals and tied for fourth with 16 points. He earned America East Player of the Week honors on Oct. 10.
Fernandes, who is the second repeat Midfielder of the Year since the award started in 2004, is the catalyst of Stony Brook’s potent attack factoring in on 11 of the Seawolves’ 24 goals this season. The junior is tied for second among conference leaders in points (17), is tied for third in assists (5) and is nodded for fourth in goals (6). A first-team all-conference midfielder for the second straight year, Fernandes was the America East Player of the Week on Sept. 26.
Louisignau, also the first-team goalkeeper, saw and saved more shots than any America East netminder this season. The senior leads the conference in save percentage (.792), saves per game (4.94) and shutouts (7). Louisignau, who has eight games with five or more saves including four with at least eight stops, picked up America East Player of the Week honors on Sept. 6.
Joining Gobeil Cruz as a first-team all-conference forward is University of Hartford’s David Bernhardsson, who has 15 points on five goals and five assists in just 10 games, and UMBC’s Pete Caringi III, a second-team choice last year, who is tied for third in assists with five and tied for seventh in points with 13.
Accompanying Fernandes in the first-team midfield are Boston U.’s Stephen Knox, UMBC’s Andrew Bulls and University of Vermont’s Yannick Lewis. Knox, a repeat selection, has five goals on the season, while Bulls, who is earning first-team honors for the third time, also scored five goals and became just the third 30 goal, 30 assist man in league history. Lewis scored four goals, including a pair of game winners, for the Catamounts this season.
Along with Madzongwe in the first-team backfield is UMBC’s Liam Paddock and Stony Brook’s Kyle McTurk. Paddock, a sophomore, helped the Retrievers shut out a league-best seven opponents while McTurk, a senior, helped the Seawolves hold America East opponents to just seven goals in as many games.
Joining Badji as second-team all-conference forwards are his teammate, Ben Berube, and Vermont’s Juan Peralta, who tied the conference record for assists in conference play with 10.
Boston U.’s Derrick McCaffrey, Hartford’s Patrick Boucher, University of New Hampshire’s Brad Hilton and Vermont’s Joe Losier, who tallied a league-high 13 points in conference play, make up the second-team midfield.
Binghamton’s Trey Jasenski, UMBC’s Dan Welsh and Vermont’s Sean Sweeney, who helped the Catamounts compile a league-best 0.99 team goals-against average, are the second team defenders.
University at Albany’s Adrian Foncette is the second-team goalkeeper. The Fans’ Choice Player of the Year, Foncette ranks third in goals-against average (1.15 GAA) and second in save percentage (.790) and saves per game (4.57 spg).
Along with Badji on the all-rookie squad are Albany’s Pomare Te Anau, Binghamton’s Tucker Sandercock, Boston U.’s Cameron Souri, Sanford Spivey and Nick Thomson, Hartford’s Antobra Ampadu and Connor Yeaney, New Hampshire’s Travis Worra, Stony Brook’s Keith McKenna and Vermont’s Taylor Stapf.
Twenty-eight of the all-conference selections will vie for the league title at the 2010 America East Men’s Soccer Championship, which begins with quarterfinal action on Saturday, November 5. For complete information on America East Men’s Soccer Championship visit Championship Central.