The Mountain East Conference released its 2013 All-Conference selections on Wednesday. The Urbana University men's soccer team had 7 players named All-Conference for the second consecutive year. Only regular season champ Notre Dame College (8) had more players honored.
Urbana's Ben Fitzpatrick landed three accolades after his fantastic freshman season. The collegiate rookie was named the MEC's Freshman of the Year, as well as Second Team All-MEC and he was named to the All-Freshman Team. Fitzpatrick finished the regular season with 5 goals, 3 assists and a team-high 51 shots in 16 starts.
Fitzpatrick was joined on the All-Freshmen Team by UU goalkeeper Nathan Jones. However, Jones also earned First Team All-MEC for his work between the pipes this season. The Wales native set a school record with 6 shutouts in the Blue Knights' 7 wins. He made 88 saves in 17 starts, while posting a 1.00 goals against average.
Urbana's other First Team All-MEC selection was third-year forward Tyler Wason. After earning All-Region honors a season ago, Wason got off to a slow start thanks to a nagging injury, but by the end of the regular season, he found himself in a familiar spot leading the squad in goals (6). Down the stretch, Wason scored in three straight games. He also added 2 assists in 16 games.
In addition to Fitzpatrick, Urbana landed three more players on the MEC's Second Team. Sophomore defender Aaron Burt earned his second straight All-Conference accolade after nailing down Freshman of the Year and First Team honors in the G-MAC a year ago. Burt made his way to the front line on a corner kick early in the season and scored his first collegiate goal on a header against Ohio Valley.
Urbana's other Second Team All-MEC selections were also repeat all-conference picks. Senior midfielder Edward Willoughby capped his career with a third straight all-conference mention. The co-captain and vocal leader notched an assist in 16 games this season. Fellow senior Yves Nzwanga earned his second straight all-conference accolade since joining the Blue Knights before his junior season. Nzwanga tallied 3 goals and an assist in 15 contests.
The seventh Blue Knight honored was junior defender Ashton Winkler. Winkler was named All-MEC Honorable Mention after anchoring the best back row in the conference for 16 games, including 14 starts. The all-conference nod is the first of Winkler's three-year career at Urbana.
The third-seeded Blue Knights (7-6-4) are busy preparing for Thursday night's MEC semifinal matchup with second-seeded Charleston. The elimination game kicks off at 8:00 p.m. at Fairmont State University. The winner advances to the MEC Championship Game on Saturday at 4:00 p.m.