Eleven Chants net All-BSC honors as tourney opens

ccusoc-uzoEleven Coastal Carolina men’s soccer student-athletes garnered All-Big South Conference recognition, it was by the conference office Monday.

Senior midfielder Colin Marz along with senior forward Tobenna Uzo were honored as first team selections. Junior midfielder Sergio Camargo and sophomores Louis Dargent (midfielder), Einar Einarsson (defender) and Elis Bjornsson (defender) were second team selections, while senior forward Bryce Follensbee and junior goalkeeper Fernando Pina were honorable mention selection. Freshmen Jair Espinoza (midfielder), Ryan Willoughby (midfielder) and Sindri Kristinsson (defender) picked up all-freshman team plaudits.

In addition, Marz was named to the All-Academic Team for his work in the classroom.Uzo, a two-time TopDrawerSoccer.com National Team of the Week honoree, is Coastal’s leader in points with 16 (five goals and six assists). He recorded braces in wins over VCU and Longwood, while also assisting on three game-winners, including in 88th minute against No. 22 Hofstra. He also scored the eventual game-winner and assisted on CCU’s first two goals to give Winthrop its only Big South loss.

Marz, who holds a 3.844 GPA as a recreation and sport management, is Coastal’s most consistent defensive midfielder. He started in each game, logging 1,575 minutes en route to leading a CCU defense that posted nine shutouts and a 0.62 goals against average. He was often charged with disrupting midfield play of opposing attacks and marking the opposition’s top midfield threat.

Camargo, who earned his third career all-conference honor, finished the regular season with four goals and four assists for 12 total points. He is CCU’s third leading scorer and second leading assist man, despite missing six games due to injury.  He scored the game-winners against #22 Old Dominion and UAB and provided assists on goals against #18 Charlotte, Williams & Mary, and Gardner-Webb. He was also named the Big South Player of Week and College Soccer News National Team of the Week on Sept. 22.

Dargent, who was an all-freshman team pick a year ago, was a midfield starter in all 17 matches played. He scored game-winner against Presbyterian and a game-tying goal at UNC Asheville. He attempted a season-high three shots against #22 Old Dominion. The Frenchman totaled 20 shot attempts with six on goal.

Einarsson was a stalwart on the backline, playing a team-high 1,589 minutes.  He helped lead the Coastal defense that did not allow a shot on goal in four straight matches, including two against Big South foes. With Einarsson in the back CCU has allowed only 11 total goals, while also posting shutouts against two ranked opponents.

Bjornsson started at outside back in all 17 games played, recording assists on goals against VCU and Presbyterian. He helped hold opponents to 3.8 shot on goal per game. Bjornsson proved to be a difficult matchup on right flank with his size and ability to serve balls into the box.

Follensbee is the Chanticleers’ leading scorer with seven goals, despite attempting only 24 shots –16 of which fell on frame. He netted the first goal of the season in opening win at No. 22 Old Dominion, then scored the equalizer in draw at No. 6 Clemson. The Orlando, Fla., native also scored twice against Gardner-Webb in opening three minutes and counted the game-winner against No. 22 Hofstra. He played in CCU’s first 15 matches before an injury sidelined him for the season.

Pina has made an immediate impact in goal for the Chanticleers. He was twice honored as a National Team of the Week and the Big South Defensive Player of the Week. He ranks 11th in the NCAA and first in the Big South with a 0.62 goals against average. He is responsible for 8.1 shutouts on the year, including 4.1 in conference play. He has 55 saves and a .833 save percentage, which ranks 12th in the NCAA.

Espinoza played a versatile attacking midfielder role, starting in nine of 17 matches played. The Guatemalan scored his first two career goals in 2-0 win over William & Mary and netted eventual game-winner against Campbell. He also assisted on game-tying goal in 1-1 draw at No. 6 Clemson. His work in the attacked helped the Coastal rank 36th in NCAA with a 1.76 goals per game average.

Willoughby also played a versatile role in the Chanticleer midfield. He provided the assists on Coastal’s first two goals helping to hand Winthrop its only Big South defeat. He attempted a season-high three shots at High Point. He appeared in 11 matches, seeing a season-high 59 minutes against Winthrop.

Kristinsson played both outside back and defensive midfield this season. His work on the defense has helped Coastal post nine shutouts and limit opponents to only 3.6 shots on goal per game.

Coastal now turns its attention toward the 2015 Big South Tournament. The Chanticleers are the No. 3 seed in the tournament and will host No. 6 seed High Point on Tuesday at 7 p.m. As an official Big South Conference postseason event, there will be an admission charge. Tickets are $5 for general admission, $4 for Coastal Carolina faculty/staff and $3 for youth (age 18 and under). However, Coastal Carolina students will be admitted free of charge with a valid CCU photo ID. All tickets will be sold at the CCU Soccer Stadium gates, which will open at 6 p.m.

Coastal has won a Big South record 12 tournament championships, including three of the last five.

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