Callum Irving Sweeps C-USA Awards for Second-Straight Year
LEXINGTON, Ky. – For the second time in as many seasons, Kentucky senior goalkeeper Callum Irving garnered a league-high three Conference USA men’s soccer specialty awards, while head coach Johan Cedergren earned Coach of the Year honors.
Awards were selected by a vote of the league’s nine head men’s soccer coaches.
Eight Wildcats earned honors from the C-USA on Tuesday.
Irving became the first player to repeat as Conference USA Player of the Year. He was also named the Conference USA Defensive MVP, becoming the first player to repeat as that award winner since UK All-American Barry Rice did so in 2007 and 2008. He earned First-Team All-C-USA honors for the third year in a row. He also repeated as recipient of the Golden Glove Award, given to the goalkeeper who posts the most shutouts in C-USA play.
Irving holds a 0.57 goals-against average (8th, NCAA) and an .821 save percentage (20th, NCAA) through all 17 matches played, totaling nine shutouts. Seven of the clean sheets came against C-USA opponents as he notched a 0.12 goals-against average, allowing just one goal in eight conference matches (773:45 minutes).
Cedergren was named a Co-C-USA Coach of the Year this season after leading the Wildcats to their first C-USA regular-season title. Under Cedergren’s guidance, UK has gone 12-3-2 in 2015 and 7-0-1 in C-USA action, marking just the fourth time in C-USA history a team has gone undefeated in league play.
Cedergren became the first person to repeat as C-USA Coach of the Year since Tulsa’s Tom McIntosh in 2007 and 2008.
As regular-season champion, Kentucky earned the No. 1 seed for the 2015 C-USA Men’s Soccer Championship and the only bye of the tournament, having advanced directly to the semifinals. UK appeared in the NSCAA poll in all but one week of the season, and are currently at the school-record No. 11 rating.
Scott Calabrese of FIU shared the Coach of the Year award with Cedergren after turning around the Panther program. In his second season at the helm, Calabrese led FIU to a 9-6-1 mark as the team will make its first trip to the C-USA Championship since 2007.
Kentucky was also represented on the All-C-USA first team by juniors Napo Matsoso and Jordan Wilson.
Matsoso started 15 games in midfield, leading the team with 14 points on four goals, three of which were game-winners, and six assists. Wilson has anchored a Wildcat back line that boasts a shutout percentage of 0.59 (5th, NCAA) and a team goals-against average of 0.56 (6th, NCAA). The defender has also contributed on offense, scoring the game-winning goal against South Carolina and adding two assists on the season.
Both Matsoso and Wilson were named first team All-C-USA last season. Matsoso was an All-Freshman team selection in 2013.
Stefan Stojkovic, Kentucky’s leading goal-scorer, earned second team All-C-USA for his sophomore season after making the All-Freshman team last year.
Kristoffer Tollefsen, a key figure both screening UK’s elite defense and starting attack’s for UK’s opportunistic offense, repeated as a selection to the All-C-USA third team.
Tanner Hummel – who started 15 games as a freshman on statistically the best defense in the league – and Xahne Reid, who emerged as a danger man on offense, were named to the C-USA All-Freshman team.
The 2015 Conference USA Men’s Soccer Championship kicks off Wednesday at Transamerica Field in Charlotte, North Carolina. Charlotte, FIU, Kentucky, Marshall, New Mexico, Old Dominion and South Carolina are set to compete in the seven-team, three-day championship. Kentucky has a first-round bye. All three quarterfinal matches and both semifinal games will be streamed on the C-USA Digital Network. The championship match is set for Sunday, Nov. 15 at 2 p.m. EST and will be televised live on FOX Sports Networks.
2015 CONFERENCE USA MEN’S AWARDS
Player of the Year
Callum Irving, Kentucky
Kyle Parker, Charlotte
Callum Irving, Kentucky
Freshman of the Year
Niko Klosterhalfen, Old Dominion
Golden Boot Award
Kyle Parker, Charlotte (seven goals)
Golden Glove Award
Callum Irving, Kentucky (seven shutouts)
Co-Coaches of the Year
Scott Calabrese, FIU
Johan Cedergren, Kentucky
All-Conference USA First Team
GK: Callum Irving, Kentucky
D: Jordan Wilson, Kentucky
MF: Napo Matsoso, Kentucky
All-Conference USA Second Team
F: Stefan Stojkovic, Kentucky
All-Conference USA Third Team
MF: Kristoffer Tollefsen, Kentucky
Conference USA All-Freshman Team
Tanner Hummel, D, Kentucky
Xahne Reid, MF, Kentucky