MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The West Virginia women's soccer team honored its seniors and handed out the 2012 season awards Saturday at its annual postseason banquet. The afternoon luncheon celebrated the team's championship season and the careers of its five-member senior class.
West Virginia finished the year with an 11-5-4 record and No. 16 ranking in Soccer America’s final poll. It was a memorable 2012 season in which the Mountaineers won the school’s first Big 12 Championship and advanced to a 13th consecutive NCAA Tournament – the nation’s ninth longest streak.
Sophomore goalkeeper Sara Keane
was named the team’s most valuable player for her efforts between the posts. A Mt. Laurel, N.J., native, Keane helped WVU go unbeaten in conference play (7-0-1), marking only the sixth time a Big 12 team has won the regular season without a loss. She recorded a 0.94 goals-against average with eight shutouts while defending 250 shots and 76 corner kicks.
Outside back Bry McCarthy
was named the team’s most defensive player after a standout career along the back line. An Ajax, Ontario, native, McCarthy earned National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-America Third Team honors. She was named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, becoming the program’s first defensive player to earn a conference major award. The All-Big 12 First Teamer worked forward into the attack to record two goals and three assists.
Forward Kate Schwindel
earned the team’s most offensive player award. A Livingston, N.J., native, Schwindel earned NSCAA All-Central Region Second Team honors and was an All-Big 12 First Team pick. She tied two school records against High Point with her two goals and three assists. Her three assists in a match tie the school record, becoming only the fourth player to do so. Schwindel’s seven points also tied a single-match record, the first since Ashley Banks posted three goals and one assist against Georgetown in 2007.
Outside back Jess Crowder
was voted the team’s most improved player after stellar sophomore season. The Cary, N.C., native successfully made the move to defender after playing in the midfield in 2011. An Academic All-Big 12 selection, Crowder recorded first career assist on Schwindel’s goal against Penn State. She earned the program’s first Big 12 Conference weekly honor, being named Defensive Player of the Week after making her first career start at defender in a 1-0 win over No. 1 ranked Stanford.
Lastly, forward Nicolette DeLaurentis
was selected for the Mountaineer S.O.C.C.E.R. award. The award is given by the coaches to the individual who displays good sportsmanship, optimism, character, concern, effort and respect. The Sicklerville, N.J., native finished with 30 career matches played.
All other team awards were voted on by the players. The graduating seniors are McCarthy, midfielder Bri Rodriguez
, defender Mallory Smith
, goalkeeper Caitlin Hulyo