Noon Rises Above NESCAC, Wins Player of the Year
HADLEY, Mass. – Amherst's Spencer Noon (Farmington, Conn.) has been honored by the conference coaches as the 2011 NESCAC Player of the Year. The first-ever Lord Jeff to win the conference's top award, Noon has been one of the many keys to Amherst's success this fall, as his squad brings a 14-1-2 record along with the program's second NESCAC crown into this weekend's NCAA Tournament opening rounds.
A scoring threat for the Lord Jeffs in each of his last three seasons, Noon owns first in the NESCAC in points for the second year in a row. It may have been a three-peat for the junior forward had his rookie campaign of 2009 not been cut short by injury, yet he still managed that year to finish second in goals and third in overall scoring. This season, Noon has matched his 2010 goal total in one less game as he has tallied 12 times and assisted on four others for a career-best 28 points, as he has found his name on the Jeff score sheet in 11 of their 17 outings this season with four game-winners. In addition to being named Player of the Year, Noon earned All-NESCAC First Team honors a year after claiming Second Team recognition.
At forward on the All-Conference First Team were three others from three different institutions. Middlebury senior Tyler Macnee (Williston, Vt.) was one of only two individuals on this year's squad to repeat from a year ago. The 2008 Rookie of the Year and Second Team selection had five goals and three helpers this fall to finish second for the Panthers in scoring. Trinity's Dan Mayernick (Gladwyne, Pa.) netted First Team for the first time, as the senior forward is leading the Bantams for the second-straight year with a career-best nine goals, five of which have been game-winners, and three assists. Gus Santos (Framingham, Mass.) of Tufts not only received All-NESCAC recognition in his first year in the league but was also named the conference's Rookie of the Year. Santos, who highlights an impressive herd of Jumbo freshmen, finished fourth in total points with 20, just one behind Trinity's Mayernick, on seven goals and six assists.
Middlebury senior midfielder Robbie Redmond (Morristown, N.J.) found a spot on the All-NESCAC squad for the third consecutive season. A First Team selection in 2009 and Second Team honoree in 2010, the hard-working Redmond competed in every match for the Panthers, collecting a goal and four assists along the way. Also in the center with Redmond on the First Team were Amherst senior Thebe Tsatsimpe (Johannesburg, South Africa) and Wesleyan junior Rory O'Neill (Silver Spring, Md.). A tough two-way midfielder, Tsatsimpe has worked hard on both sides of the ball, recording a career-high four assists along the way. O'Neill has been dominant in the middle for the league's best defense, yet he also paces a balanced Cardinal attack with a personal-best six goals, including four game-winners.
Bowdoin senior Sean Bishop (Danvers, Mass.) joined Macnee of Middlebury in earning First Team for the second-straight fall. Bishop started every match and was consistent in the back for the Polar Bears while chipping in a goal and two assists. Moving up from the 2010 Second Team was junior Matt Ratajczak (Brooklyn, N.Y.). The 6-foot-4-inch center back was essential to an Eph defense that finished third in the NESCAC with a 0.59 goals against average, as he was consistently solid with the ball both in the air and at his feet. Selected as All-NESCAC for the first time in their careers were two players from the top defenses in the league in Trinity senior Joe Buckley (Shrewsbury, Mass.) and Amherst junior Chris Lerner (Canton, Mass.). Buckley moved back from the midfield early in the season following a teammate's injury and has performed admirably. A great 1-on-1 defender, Lerner's presence was felt all over the pitch for the Jeffs, as his six assists are tops for his squad.
Wesleyan junior goalkeeper Adam Purdy (Montclair, N.J.) returned to the All-NESCAC First Team this autumn. After a remarkable campaign that earned him NESCAC Rookie of the Year and First Team accolades two years ago, Purdy has put on a repeat performance in 2011. Playing every minute of every game in net for the Cardinals, Purdy leads the conference with 10 shutouts and a 0.57 goals against average and is second in save percentage with an .868 mark heading into Wesleyan's first round NCAA action against Misericorida on Saturday.
Mike Pilger garnered NESCAC Coach of the Year for the second time during his eight-year career at Trinity (2007). Pilger's Bantams have enjoyed an impressive fall as they matched their best finish in the conference standings, reached the NESCAC final for the first time ever, and earned the program's second NCAA Division III Tournament bid. With 10 wins in 2011, Trinity is guaranteed to finish with double-digit victories for the fourth time in program history. Three of those seasons have come for the Bantams in the last four years.
2011 NESCAC Men's Soccer All-Conference
|F||Tyler Macnee||Middlebury||Sr.||Williston, Vt.|
|F||Dan Mayernick||Trinity||Sr.||Gladwyne, Pa.|
|F||Spencer Noon||Amherst||Jr.||Farmington, Conn.|
|F||Gus Santos||Tufts||Fr.||Framingham, Mass.|
|M||Rory O'Neill||Wesleyan||Jr.||Silver Spring, Md.|
|M||Robbie Redmond||Middlebury||Sr.||Morristown, N.J.|
|M||Thebe Tsatsimpe||Amherst||Sr.||Johannesburg, South Africa
|D||Sean Bishop||Bowdoin||Sr.||Danvers, Mass.|
|D||Joe Buckley||Trinity||Sr.||Shrewsbury, Mass.|
|D||Chris Lerner||Amherst||Jr.||Canton, Mass.|
|D||Matt Ratajczak||Williams||Jr.||Brooklyn, N.Y.|
|GK||Adam Purdy||Wesleyan||Jr.||Montclair, N.J.|
|F||Oscar Brown||Connecticut College
|F||Jae Heo||Amherst||So.||Changwon, South Korea|
|F||John Murphy||Bates||Jr.||Yarmouth, Maine|
|F||Alejandro Sucre||Amherst||Sr.||Caracas, Venezuela|
|M||Andrew Meisel||Colby||Jr.||Newtown, Conn.|
|M||Otis Pitney||Middlebury||Sr.||Washington, D.C.|
|D||Ben Brewster||Bowdoin||So.||Cape Elizabeth, Maine|
|D||Jack Freeman||Middlebury||Jr.||Ridgewood, N.J.|
|D||Isaac Hancock||Connecticut College||Sr.||Gettysburg, Pa.|
|D||Phil Vestergaard||Williams||Sr.||St. Petersburg, Fla.|
|GK||Grant Schonberg||Trinity||Sr.||Mendham, N.J.|
|Player of the Year|
|Rookie of the Year|
|Coach of the Year|