Eight members of the Wright State men's soccer team were honored as the Horizon League announced its postseason awards on Monday.
Senior forward Peguy Ngatcha was selected as the Player of the Year and as the Offensive Player of the Year. He was joined on the First Team by senior forward Eric Lynch and senior defenders Jake Stovall and Kaique Fernandes. Sophomore midfielder Jackson Dietrich and junior midfielder AJ Paterson were named to the Second Team while defender Austin Kinley was chosen to the All-Freshman Team.
Head Coach Bryan Davis rounded out the list of honorees as he was selected as the league's Coach of the Year.
Ngatcha (Manchester, NH/Kimball Union Academy) is tied for the league lead with 10 goals and is second with 24 points. The Horizon League Offensive Player of the Week on October 10, he scored two goals in wins over Cincinnati, UIC and Northern Kentucky, with his other four goals coming against Portland, Duquesne, Oakland and Detroit Mercy. He also has four assists on the year versus Portland, North Carolina State, Cleveland State and Valparaiso.
Ngatcha, who was a First Team All-League selection in 2014 and 2015, joins Lynch (2014) as Raiders who have been named as the league's overall Player and Offensive Player of the Year.
Lynch (Bellbrook, OH/Bellbrook) was second on the team with six goals, six assists and 18 points. He is fourth in the league in assists and points and tied for fifth in goals. Lynch scored game-winning goals against Duquesne, Eastern Illinois, Detroit Mercy and Valparaiso and also had goals versus UIC and North Carolina State. He also had two assists at Portland and one against Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky, Oakland and Valparaiso.
Named to the All-Freshman Team in 2013 and First Team All-League in 2014 and 2015, Lynch is second on the school's all-time list with 30 assists.
Stovall (Centerville, OH/Centerville) has been an important part of the Wright State defense this season that has allowed just 18 goals overall for a 0.96 goals against average and has been even more impressive in league, giving up only two goals for a 0.21 goals against average. Named the Horizon League Defensive Player of the Week on October 10, Stovall has also chipped in three assists offensively, two coming against UIC and one versus Cleveland State.
Fernandes (West Babylon, NY/North Babylon), along with his contributions on defense, has given the Raider offense a boost this season as he is third on the squad with three goals. He scored WSU's lone tally in a 1-1 tie at #15 Virginia Tech on October 11, had the game-winning goal against Cleveland State on October 22 and had the team's first goal versus Milwaukee on October 29.
Dietrich (Las Vegas, NVFoothill), who was last year's Horizon League Freshman of the Year, leads the league this season with eight assists. He recorded two assists in the home opener against Duquesne and had one against Cincinnati, UIC, Northern Kentucky, Virginia Tech, Detroit Mercy and Milwaukee. He also posted one goal as he scored in the final minutes last Friday at Valparaiso.
Paterson (Key Largo, FL/Coral Shores) recorded two goals and three assists this season while appearing in 14 matches. After posting two assists in a win at Northern Kentucky and scoring a goal at North Carolina State, he played a part in both goals during a 2-1 win over Milwaukee that clinched the top seed for the Raiders in the league tournament, assisting the first and tallying the golden goal in overtime.
Kinley (Xenia, OH/Xenia) started all but one match and contributed the Raider defense allowing just 18 goals all season overall and only two in league play. Kinley's selection marks the sixth consecutive year that Wright State has had at least one player named to the All-Freshman Team.
"The team this year, as a whole, has been a fun group to coach," said Davis. "In my very biased opinion, all of them deserve individual recognition in one way or another. That being said, the men that were recognized all were very deserving of their award."
"I can't say enough about Peguy, Eric, Jackson and AJ on the offensive side of the ball and Jake and Kai honestly have been phenomenal at center back," added Davis. "Austin Kinley being added to the Freshman Team was also very deserving as he nearly played every minute this year for us."
"If you ask the guys, however, what means the most right now is Thursday," said Davis. "I am sure these men will be the first to want to get back to work today and focus on Thursday's game."
Davis, in his eighth season at the helm of the Raiders, directed the team to its first-ever regular-season league title this season, with the seven league wins being the most in program history. WSU also posted nonleague wins over Portland, Cincinnati, Duquesne and Eastern Illinois while tying #15 Virginia Tech on the road.
"To be named Coach of the Year is quite an honor," said Davis. "It's an award that speaks less about me and more about Wright State and its soccer program."
"There are three key reasons our team had success this year and has continued to build on our success year after year," added Davis. "First, the administration and the support that Bob Grant , Joylynn Brown and Trevor Doll give us as a program is unmatched in our league and has a personal touch that simply you wont find many places. Soccer is important to them."
"Second, the men that come to work everyday, put on their hard hats and get after it. These guys have bought into and lived within the staff vision from day 1 and it has showed in our performance thus far."
"Last, and most important, my staff. This award is truly about them and their body of work. These guys are first class. Jake Slemker is one of the best soccer minds I'll ever be around and will be one day a big time head coach. Mike Flynn has done an incredible job over the past year growing as an assistant coach and becoming what I think one of the best goalkeeper coaches in the country. Last, but not least, Adam Horseman who has kept the men diligent on their health and treatment all year and has worked tirelessly after overnight bus rides, busy practice schedules, etc. to make sure these guys are ready. Those three guys are the true winners of this award and I share this honor and award with each of them."
Wright State, which is currently eighth in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Great Lakes Regional poll, has won 35 matches over the past three seasons under Davis, 15 of those in league play. It is the first Coach of the Year award for the program.
Wright State (11-5-2, 7-1-1 Horizon) opens Horizon League Tournament play on Thursday, November 10, as the #1 seed Raiders host a semifinal match starting at 7:00. The finals are set for Saturday, November 12, at 6:00, again at Alumni Field, with the winner receiving an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
The following is the 2016 men's soccer All-Horizon League teams:
FIRST TEAM ALL-HORIZON LEAGUE
|Peguy Ngatcha||Wright State||Sr.||F|
|Eric Lynch||Wright State||Sr.||F|
|Alec Nagucki||Cleveland State||Jr.||M|
|Sergio Manesio||Cleveland State||Sr.||D|
|Jake Stovall||Wright State||Sr.||D|
|Kaique Fernandes||Wright State||Sr.||D|
SECOND TEAM ALL-HORIZON LEAGUE
|Jake Lagania||Cleveland State||Jr.||F|
|Spiro Pliakos||Detroit Mercy||Jr.||F|
|Jackson Dietrich||Wright State||So.||M|
|AJ Paterson||Wright State||Jr.||M|
|Andre Baires||Green Bay||Fr.||D|
HORIZON LEAGUE ALL-FRESHMAN TEAM
|Lawrence Karpeh||Cleveland State||F|
|Andre Baires||Green Bay||D|
Player of the Year: Peguy Ngatcha, Sr., F, Wright State
Offensive Player of the Year: Peguy Ngatcha, Sr., F, Wright State
Defensive Player of the Year: Sergio Manesio, Sr., D, Cleveland State
Goalkeeper of the Year: Andrew Putna, Sr., UIC
Freshman of the Year: Evan Conway, F, Milwaukee
Coach of the Year: Bryan Davis, Wright State