Nov. 14, 2013
• 2013 All-Big Ten Teams and Individual Awards
MADISON, Wis. -- Reflecting on a regular season in which the Wisconsin men's soccer team more than doubled its win total and scored 16 more goals than its previous campaign, there was much praise to go around.
UW received impressive performances in 2013 from a multitude of players, and with the release of the men's soccer individual awards on Thursday, it's apparent that the rest of the Big Ten noticed the team's success, as well.
Senior Tomislav Zadro was tabbed as the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, while also earning first-team All-Big Ten honors. On the opposite end of the spectrum, junior AJ Cochran was chosen as the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and accompanied Zadro as a first-team All-Big Ten selection.
Wisconsin joins Ohio State as the only two teams in conference history to have two players earn Big Ten Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year honors in the same season.
Zadro and Cochran are also the first players in UW history to win the prestigious conference awards, with both earning first-team All-Big Ten accolades for the second time in their careers.
Zadro returned from an ACL injury that required him to miss the entire 2012 season, making an immediate impact this season. Despite undergoing surgery and missing three games, the Toronto, Ontario, native finished the season with 16 points and a Big Ten-best eight assists. His most impressive performance came in the Badgers' home-opening weekend, where he willed UW to a 3-2 comeback win over DePaul in overtime.
Cochran began the season as a preseason All-American and lived up to the billing, anchoring a backline that tallied six shutouts and helping UW remain perfect at home. Cochran flashed his offensive brilliance in UW's memorable homecoming win over defending national champion Indiana on Oct. 11, earning a pair of goals, including the game winner to cap off an amazing comeback.
Senior Nick Janus, who ranks second in the Big Ten in goals (9), was also tabbed as a first-team All-Big Ten performer, while teammates Drew Conner represented the Cardinal and White on the second team.
Janus proved to be one of Wisconsin's most consistent options this season, as he finished the regular season tallying scores in 10 of the Badgers last 16 contests. The Deer Park, Ill., native ended as the team-leader in points (20) and goals.
Conner finished tied for second in the conference in assists (7), while completing the regular-season with nine points.
Fellow freshman Brian Hail and Nick Jones were named to Big Ten's All-Freshman Team. Despite their youth, both players were contributors to the Badgers' success this season. Hail appeared in 18 games, netting one goal, while Jones participated in 14 games, recording seven points on two goals and three assists.
In addition, senior goalkeeper Max Jentsch earned the Big Ten's sportsmanship award for his tremendous reputation in the classroom as well as on the playing field. After stepping in to take over the starting goalkeeper role on Oct. 23 at Milwaukee, Jentsch has been solid in net.
In six starts, the Hartland, Wis., native amassed a 4-1-1 record, defeating two ranked Big Ten opponents and posting a 0.81 goals against average.
The Badgers now await Monday's NCAA tournament selection show. UW looks to appear in the Big Dance for the first time since winning the national title in 1995.