(ATLANTA, Ga.) –The Southern Athletic Association (SAA) has announced the 2012 Men's Soccer All-Conference award winners and, after exclusive voting conducted by the league's head coaches, Ryan Garvey of Centre was named Offensive Player of the Year, Berry's Leo Gutierrez was named Defensive Player of the Year and Johannes Loeffler of Birmingham-Southern claimed Newcomer of the Year status. Berry head coach Richard Vardy received the Coach of the Year honor from his peers.
A total of 50 student-athletes earned recognition as 14 claimed All-SAA First Team awards, 11 All-SAA Second Team awards and twenty-five were selected to the Honorable Mention Team.
Ryan Garvey, a senior forward from Louisville, Ky., was a dominant force for Centre throughout the season en route to claiming the Offensive Player of the Year prize. He set Centre College career records in goals and points scored, two categories he also led the SAA this season with a whopping 21 goals and 46 points. In addition to finding the back of the net with regularity, Garvey dished out 4 assists, demonstrating his playmaking abilities. When the Colonels needed it most, however, Garvey showed a flair for the goal-scoring dramatic as evidence by his league-best 6 game winning goals in 2012.
Berry's Leo Gutierrez, a senior midfielder from Peachtree City, Ga., was the Vikings captain and field general for a squad that won the inaugural SAA Tournament and amassed a sparkling 14-3-2 overall record. His leadership and outstanding decision making skills helped earn the Defensive Player of the Year award. Gutierrez directed traffic at midfield with aplomb as the Vikings held a league-best 0.64 goals against average for a defense that only allowed three goals in conference play all year. He also demonstrated the ability to strike when necessary, putting two of his four shots on the season in the back of the net.
Birmingham-Southern's Johannes Loeffler, a freshman midfielder from Giessen, Germany, earned Newcomer of the Year status by showing poise beyond his years. The first-year player joined the squad this fall and immediately demonstrated he would be an asset to the team. His versatility and skill in the midfield helped keep the Panthers undefeated in league play (3-0-4). Under his guidance, the Panther offense ranked 1st in shots, 2nd in goals scored and 2nd in assists. Loeffler also showed a preternatural ability to score, finding the back of the net twice and dishing two assists in 2012.
Richard Vardy just completed his eleventh successful season as head coach of the Vikings. In that time he has amassed a remarkable 155-53-13 overall record. Known for producing great soccer coaches, Berry has certainly found another with Vardy whose 14-3-2 2012 squad led the league in shots on goal, corner kicks and goals allowed average. He also stamped the Vikings campus in Mount Berry, Ga. as a difficult road trip for SAA foes as Berry compiled a perfect 8-0 record at home this season.
2012 Southern Athletic Association Men's Soccer All-Conference First Team
Name School Position Class Year Hometown
Ryan Garvey Centre F Sr. Louisville, Ky.
Eric Ly Rhodes MF So. Huntsville, Ala.
Jeremy Carlson Centre C So. Seattle, Wash.
Connor Silvestri Hendrix F Sr. Conway, Ark.
Samuel Edoung-Biyo Sewanee MF Sr. Washington, D.C.
Carlos Gaston Oglethorpe F So. Tallahassee, Fla.
Josh Hughes Berry MF Jr. Peachtree City, Ga.
Zak Wallingford Berry F So. Lawrenceville, Ga.
Cory Gonzalez BSC D Jr. Birmingham, Ala.
Lukas Elmhammar Millsaps MF Fr. Stockholm, Sweden
Robbe Tarver Centre D Jr. Houston, Texas
Leo Gutierrez Berry MF Sr. Peachtree City, Ga.
Tobias Winter BSC F Jr. Giessen, Germany
Zach Sosnovich Centre GK Sr. Woodbridge, N.J.
2012 Southern Athletic Association Men's Soccer All-Conference Second Team
Name School Position Year Hometown
Caleb Lucas Berry F Fr. Maryville, Tenn.
Nikos Papanikolopoulos Oglethorpe D Jr. Atlanta, Ga.
Matt Seib Berry MF Jr. Toccoa, Ga.
Brooks Busby BSC MF Jr. Birmingham, Ala.
Nathan Haywood BSC D Sr. Fairhope, Ala.
Dylan Reed Hendrix D Sr. Conway, Ark.
Chris Haberstroh Sewanee D Fr. Birmingham, Ala.
Cameron Miller Centre C So. Nicholasville, Ky.
Ford Emerson Sewanee D So. Nashville, Tenn.
Riley Sheen Rhodes GK Fr. Goodletsville, Tenn.
Andy Roskos-Ewoldsen Rhodes MF So. Tuscaloosa, Ala.
2012 Southern athletic Association Men's Soccer Honorable Mention
Berry: Logan Hill, Matt Williams
Birmingham-Southern: Haraldur Birgisson, Sveinbo Grimsson, Johannes Loeffler, Ryan Deveikis
Centre: Jack Goblirsch, Austin Greer, Will Frentz
Hendrix: Grant Womack, Pedro Sagone, Kevin Gregory, Jacob Pierce
Millsaps: Stephen Andrieu, Taylor Harrison, Chucky Hayden, Christopher Lawrence, Matt Crooker
Oglethorpe: Jakub Madej, Ben Robertson, Frank Petersen, Sean King
Rhodes: Josh Bennett
Sewanee: Jacob Zalewski, Solly Thomas