December 19, 2012
4 FDU men on All-North Atlantic team
The Fairleigh Dickinson men's team had four players named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-North Atlantic Region team.
Senior midfielder Jack McVey and junior defender Nicholas Walker, who were both first team All-Northeast Conference performers, were selected to the first team, while redshirt junior defender Jeffrey Barrenechea, a second team All-NEC picks, was named to the second team. Junior goalkeeper Jacob Lissek, the NEC Tournament MVP, was chosen to the third team.
The Knights (11-6-6) completed one of the most successful seasons in program history after advancing to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Division I Tournament for the second time since 2000, having advanced to the Elite Eight in 2001.
FDU went on the road and defeated No. 18 St. John's, 1-0, and No. 12 Saint Louis, the eighth overall seed, 2-1, in double extratime before losing in extratime at defending national champion North Carolina, the No. 5 team in the country and the ninth overall seed, 1-0.
The 2012 NEC champions (6-1-3) won an unprecedented seventh conference title and sixth since 2000, while becoming only the third NEC team in history to win games in the NCAA Tournament. Only the 2001 FDU team (wins over Boston College, Princeton and Seton Hall) and the 2007 Central Connecticut team (wins over Harvard and Tulsa) had previously posted victories.
In NCAA Tournament play since 2000, the Knights own a 5-5-1 record, with the one tie coming in 2002 when FDU used a penalty kick shootout to advance to the second round after a 1-1 draw with Holy Cross.
"I'm really happy for these four young men, as they were each major contributors to our success this past season,” FDU coach Seth Roland said. “We could not have advanced to NCAA Sweet 16 and could not have won our program's seventh NEC championship without their high level of consistent performance throughout the season."
McVey started all 22 games he played and led the team with six goals and 17 points, while dishing out five assists. His game-winning header in the second overtime against Saint Louis propelled the Knights to the Sweet 16.
Walker, who started 21 of 23 contests, scored two goals, including FDU's lone goal in the NEC championship game against Saint Francis (Pa.), and anchored a defense that was one of the stingiest in the country. Barrenechea, who joined Walker in the back, started all 22 games he played and recorded on assist on the year, while shutting down opposing offenses.
Lissek posted an 11-4-6 record between the pipes as he started 20 of 22 games. He recorded 10 clean sheets for the second most shutouts in season, tying him for the most in program history with 21. Lissek made 62 saves and posted a 0.93 goals-against average.