SMU's Needham among finalists
SMU senior defender Jay Needham was one of the three finalists for the men's Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy, the highest individual honor in intercollegiate soccer, as announced by the organization on Monday. The finalists were determined in voting of Division I men's soccer coaches who are members of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA).
In addition to Needham, Boston College's Charlie Davies and Notre Dame's Joseph Lapira are the other two finalists for the award. The trio will be invited to the Busch Center on the campus of Saint Louis University on Saturday, Dec. 2, for a news conference where the winner of the award will be revealed. The announcement will be carried live on ESPNews (6:45 ET).
Davies, a junior forward from Manchester, N.H., led the Eagles in scoring with a school record of 15 goals and six assists for 36 points. He was named the Atlantic Coast Conference Offensive Player of the Year. Davies led the league in seven offensive categories, including points, goals, shots and game-winning goals (six).
Lapira, a junior forward from Lake Charles, La., has started every match this season for the Fighting Irish. He was selected Big East Conference Offensive Player of the Year. Lapira leads all NCAA Division I men's scorers with 22 goals on the season.
Needham, a senior defender from Fort Worth, Texas, earned Conference USA Defender of the Year honors in 2006. He also earned first-team all-conference honors. Needham anchored a defense that tied a school record with 14 shutouts on the season. He started every match this season for the Mustangs registering three goals and three assists for nine points.