The University of Wisconsin mens soccer team celebrated the 2007 season with its annual awards banquet last week at Heritage Hall. The Badgers finished the season 6-7-6 overall and 0-3-3 in conference play.
During the banquet, awards were handed out for Most Outstanding Freshman, Most Improved Player, the Wiiliam G. Reddan Spirit of Soccer Award, Defensive MVP and Offensive MVP. All awards were voted on by the players.
Woodstock, Ill., native Aaron Nichols was named the teams Most Outstanding Freshman. Nichols started five of the 17 matches he competed in, recording six shots with one goal. He also earned a spot on the Big Ten All-Freshman team.
The Most Improved Player Award went to freshman Cale Cooper. Fresh from nearby West High School right here in Madison, Wis., Cooper started three of his seven games as a Badger. Despite his defensive position, Cooper logged one shot on goal as well as an assist.
Seniors Nick Caronna and BJ Goodman received the William G. Reddan Spirit of Soccer Award. The award is presented annually to the University of Wisconsin soccer player who best exemplifies Coach Bill Reddans positive spirit of the game of soccer. Caronna, from Brookfield, Wis., started all 16 games he played in, and was third on the team in goals (three) despite holding down the backfield for the Badger defense. Goodman, of Lake Orion, Mich., was converted from midfield to defense at the start of the season, but still managed to log three shots on goal during his 17 games.
Fellow defender, junior Andy Miller was named the teams Defensive MVP. A native of Barrington, Ill., Miller was a strong contributor to the teams defensive line. He started 17 of 18 games, and finished the season second on the team in minutes with 1647. His goal against Northwestern at the Big Ten tournament earned him a spot on the All-Championship team.
Finally, sophomore Brandon Miller, received the teams Offensive MVP award. Miller started all 18 of the matches he played in, recording one goal and three assists to help the Badgers to a 4-0 shutout against Northern Illinois (Sept. 26). He finished the season tied for fourth for shots (18) and taking second for assists with six.
Along with the presentation of awards, the 2008 captains were also named. Current junior Andy Miller and current sophomores Alex Horwath and Taylor Waspi were named to be next years team captains. Horwath, of Woodbine, Md. came to Wisconsin from the University of Connecticut this season and logged over 1600 minutes as UWs goalkeeper. He held a seven-game shutout streak during the season, and was named Big Ten Co-Defensive Player of the Week two times (Sept. 17and Nov. 4), as well as Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Week goalkeeper on Sept. 10. Waspi, from Deer Park, Ill., started 13 of 14 games and recorded one goal on 12 shots this season.
In addition, the mens soccer team honored its five seniors: Nick Caronna, Sho Fujita, B.J. Goodman, Erik Ortega and Dirk Pearson.