NEW HAVEN, Conn. (November 2, 2015) -- Wilmington University standout Clifford Nwechefom on Monday was named the 2015 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) Men's Soccer Player of the Year, as announced by Commissioner Dan Mara. Nwechefom's top honor highlighted the entire list of All-CACC honors announced by the conference.
In addition to Nwechefom, teammate Adrian Tash was named the CACC Defensive Player of the Year, while Nyack College freshman Simon Kraemer was tabbed as the league's rookie of the year. WilmU head man Nick Papanicolas was selected as the BSN Sports CACC Coach of the Year, while Felician University earned the league's Team Sportsmanship Award.
Voting for the major awards and all-conference honors was conducted by the league's 13 head coaches, while the top coaching accolade was selected by sports information directors throughout the conference.
Nwechefom tied for the league lead in goals following the regular season, as he dumped in 17. He also assisted on four other markers to produce a leage-leading 38 points. Nwechefom fired off 66 shots on the season with six of those going as game-winning tallies. He scored multiple goals in four matches with a season-high of three coming in a 5-0 triumph over Goldey-Beacom College on Oct. 20.
Tash was tabbed as the league's top defensive player after helping to anchor a defensive unit that yielded the fewest goals allowed in the league (8). The Wildcats also produced eight shutouts. Tash also got involved in the offensive act this year by assisting on four goals to produce four total points.
Kraemer took home the top freshman award after producing 11 goals (6th highest in the league) during his rookie campaign. He ranked seventh in points (22) and penalty kicks (2-for-2). Kraemer scored at least twice in three matches, including a season-best three markers against Goldey-Beacom on Oct. 13.
Papanicolas was crowned as the CACC's top coach after guiding the Wildcats to 30 points in conference play to capture the regular season title and the No. 1 seed in this week's championship tournament.
Felician garnered the sportsmanship award for the outstanding character the team showed in promoting the sport at the conference level during the season.
Both Nwechefom and Tash also locked up spots on the All-CACC First-Team and were joined by nine other student-athletes who had spectacular 2015 regular seasons. Joining Nwechefom at midfield were teammate Juan Bernal (WilmU) and Concordia College's Javier Alvarez Vispo. Four forwards garnered spots on the first-team including Anthony Asante (Post University), Lancey Berry (Wilmington), Michael Clarke (Georgian Court University) and Paulo Claudio (Bloomfield College). Three defenders appeared on the top unit and included Angelo Dambalas (Philadelphia University), Lukas Nordin (Dominican College) and Tash. Caldwell University standout Michael Hartmann was tabbed as the first-team goalkeeper.
Twelve (12) student-athletes -- including Kramer at midfield -- were placed on the All-CACC Second-Team, including Ishmaiah Calwrie (F, Philadelphia), Tiago Martins (F, Post), Kenny Monfort (F, Felician), Armando Filho (M, Post), Nicholas Jaffe (M, Chestnut Hill College), Jacob Butler-Bowdon (D, Post), Chris Kulczytzky (D, Philadelphia), Joe Woodley (D, Wilmington), Frank Hall (GK, Wilmington), Jon Hanlon (GK, Post) and James Jackson (GK, Chestnut Hill).
The All-CACC honorees will be recognized at the 2015 CACC Soccer Championship Banquet on Wednesday night on the eve of the men's and women's soccer semifinals at Post University.
The Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference is an NCAA Division II Conference composed of 14 institutions in Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The member institutions are Bloomfield College, Caldwell University, Chestnut Hill College, Concordia (N.Y.) College, Dominican (N.Y.) College, Felician University, Georgian Court University, Goldey-Beacom College, Holy Family University, Nyack College, Philadelphia University, Post University of Waterbury, University of the Sciences, and Wilmington University.
2015 CACC MEN'S SOCCER PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Clifford Nwechefom (Wilmington)
2015 CACC MEN'S SOCCER ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Simon Kraemer (Nyack)
2015 CACC MEN'S SOCCER DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Adrian Tash (Wilmington)
2015 BSN SPORTS CACC MEN'S SOCCER COACH OF THE YEAR
Nick Papanicolas (Wilmington)
2015 CACC MEN'S SOCCER TEAM SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD
2015 ALL-CACC MEN'S SOCCER FIRST-TEAM
Anthony Asante (F, Post)
Lance Berry (F, Wilmington)
Michael Clarke (F, Georgian Court)
Paulo Claudio (F, Bloomfield)
Javier Alvarez Vispo (M, Concordia)
Juan Bernal (M, Wilmington)
Clifford Nwechefom (M, Wilmington)
Angelo Dambalas (D, Philadelphia)
Lukas Nordin (D, Dominican)
Adrian Tash (D, Wilmington)
Michael Hartmann (GK, Caldwell)
2015 ALL-CACC MEN'S SOCCER SECOND-TEAM
Ishmaiah Calwrie (F, Philadelphia)
Tiago Martins (F, Post)
Kenny Monfort (F, Felician)
Armando Filho (M, Post)
Nicholas Jaffe (M, Chestnut Hill)
Simon Kraemer (M, Nyack)
Jacob Butler-Bowdon (D, Post)
Chris Kulczytzky (D, Philadelphia)
Joe Woodley (D, Wilmington)
Frank Hall (GK, Wilmington)
Jon Hanlon (GK, Post)
James Jackson (GK, Chestnut Hill)