Nov. 13, 2008
Baltimore, Md. - Junior back Tennant McVea was selected as the MAAC Defensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive season and teammate Jamie Darvill was honored as Offensive Player of the Year, it was announced on Thursday evening at the MAAC Tournament banquet in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. Head Coach Mark Mettrick was selected by his peers as the Anaconda Sports MAAC Coach of the Year for the second straight year and fifth time in his Loyola career.
The top-seeded and sixth-ranked Greyhounds open up conference tournament play on Friday at 4 p.m. against fourth-seed Niagara on the Marist campus.
With a 5-nil win over Rider on Saturday, the Greyhounds won their second consecutive conference league title and their eighth in the past 10 years under Mettrick. Carrying a national-best 26-match unbeaten streak into this weekend's play, Loyola will be playing for its second consecutive MAAC Tournament Title.
McVea, a junior from Belfast, North Ireland, claims his second consecutive Defensive Player of the Year Award. He captains a lockdown defense which ranks sixth nationally in goals-allowed-a-game (0.61) and third in save percentage (0.874). The team has outscored its opponents, 45-11, on the season and the defense has allowed a league-low five goals in nine conference matches.
McVea and the Greyhounds defense have posted a league-high 11 shutouts this season as well. The 11 clean sheets are tied for third nationally. The defender has also contributed on the offensive side, scoring a pair of goals. He netted the game-winner in a 3-1 victory over Siena with an early header in the fourth minute, earning a spot in College Soccer News Selection of the Week recognitions.
Darvill, a junior striker from London, England, heads an explosive Loyola offense which scored 2.50 goals-a-game. That mark topped the conference and ranked second only to Wake Forest nationally. The Loyola attack also led the conference in goals (45), points-a-game (7.50) and assists-a-game (2.50).
Earning MAAC Player of the Week thrice this season, Darvill ranks first in the league in points-a-game (2.11) and goals (14). He stands second in the conference with 10 assists and his four game-winning goals place him in a tie for third in the conference. His numbers have cracked the national stage as well, as he is third in the country in points-per-game, tenth in goals-a-game (0.78) and ninth in assists-a-game (0.56). In Loyola's 3-nil win over Manhattan, he scored all three of his team's goals in notching the first hat-trick in five seasons at Evergreen.
Mettrick, in his ninth year at the helm of Loyola (172-89-27, .644) guided the Greyhounds to a 17-0 record in the regular-season, including a perfect 9-0 mark in conference play. The unbeaten regular-season is the first in 22 seasons and the fourth in the program's rich history, joining the 1986 team (15-0-4), 1971 team (12-0-0) and 1968 team (9-0-2).
Bannister, a sophomore forward from Newcastle, England, ranked second on the team with 11 goals and six assists. He is 13th nationally in points-a-game (1.75) and 20th in goals-a-game (0.69). In a span from October 13-27, he was named MAAC Offensive Player of the Week three consecutive times, as he scored five points in a match a remarkable three times during that span. He was also recognized this season as an ESPN/CoSIDA Academic All-District II First Team selection. Bannister maintains a 3.67 GPA in accounting.
Ankrah finished the regular-season with four goals, which ranks fourth on the team. The sophomore midfielder from Gaithersburg, Md., also added a pair of assists. He scored the first goal of the season for Loyola in a 2-nil win over Fordham, and scored the game-winner in a 1-nil victory over Niagara back on October 10th, delivering his late heroics in the 89th minute.
Arguably no one was steadier in the back than junior goalkeeper Milos Kocic. A native of Leskovac, Serbia, Kocic played every minute of the season except ten in the frame for Loyola, allowing only 0.61 goals-a-game, which tops the MAAC. He ranks sixth nationally in save percentage (0.867) and 15th in goals-against-average (0.607). He garnered MAAC Defensive Player of the Week honors a league-high four times this season.
Bantock, a sophomore defender from E. Sussex, England, earns All-MAAC honors in his first season at Evergreen. His six assists on the year were tied with Bannister for second on the team, and ranked fourth in the conference.
Deasel, a sophomore midfielder from Kingsville, Md., patrolled a Loyola midfield that set the pace for the Greyhounds' attack. Playing on both sides of the ball, he notched a goal and an assist on the season. In two seasons at Evergreen, he has started 39 of 40 games for Loyola.
Hanson, a midfielder from Gaithersburg, Md., played in 14 games for the Greyhounds, scoring a goal and adding a pair of assists. A key part of the Loyola midfield, he earned MAAC Rookie of the Week honors in mid-September. He assisted on the only goal of the game in the win over Campbell and then tallied the game-winning goal at George Washington, snapping a 1-1 tie with an unassisted goal as he scored off a rebound of his own shot in front of the net.
Jaskolski earned MAAC Rookie of the Week honors twice this season. The freshman from Potomac, Md., netted the game-winner back on October 4th in a wild, 5-4 Loyola home victory over Quinnipiac. He appeared in nine games this season for the Greyhounds. He also assisted on the game-winning goal in Loyola's 1-nil victory over Mount Saint Mary's back on September 20.
The Greyhounds and Niagara get underway on Friday at 4 o'clock p.m. in the Tournament Semifinals. For Live Stats, go to Loyolagreyhounds.com.
Second-seeded Siena and third-seeded Fairfield is the other semifinal match. Sunday's Championship will be broadcast on ESPNU at noon.