Nov. 8, 2017
Summit League Semifinal Preview
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OMAHA (DU/Summit) – University of Denver men’s soccer junior striker Andre Shinyashiki (Sao Paulo, Brazil) was named the Summit League Offensive Player of the Year, redshirt-junior centerback Scott DeVoss (Centennial, Colo.) earned Defensive Player of the Year honors, freshman holding midfielder Jacob Stensson (Stockholm, Sweden) was tabbed the Newcomer of the Year and third-year head coach Jamie Franks was named the head coach of the year, the league office announced Wednesday.
Senior co-captain Graham Smith (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) joined Shinyashiki, DeVoss and Stensson on the Summit League First Team, while DU’s other senior co-captain Alex Underwood (Winnetka, Ill.) and senior outside back AJ Fuller (Littleton, Colo.) were voted to the Summit League Second Team. Stensson also earned a spot on the All-Newcomer Team.
Shinyashiki is the second Denver student-athlete to be named Offensive Player of the Year (Zach Bolden, 2013). The junior, a three-time Offensive Player of the Week recipient, leads The Summit League with 22 points and is tied for the league-lead with nine goals, while his four assists on the year are tied for second. He has also added two game-winning goals this season.
DeVoss anchored a Denver defensive unit that led the league in shutouts (7), goals allowed (13) and goals against average (0.74). The junior started all 17 Denver contests and produced five shots, while collecting one Defensive Player of the Week award this season (Oct. 23).
Stensson helped lead Denver to a 10-6-1 overall mark. He totaled three assists this season, all coming against league competition, recording a pair at Fort Wayne. The freshman becomes just the second Pioneer to win the Newcomer of the Year award, joining teammate Shinyashiki (2015).
Franks collects his third consecutive Coach of the Year honor after leading the Pioneers to their second unblemished league record at 5-0-0 (6-0-0, 2013). Peaking at No. 3 in the national polls earlier this season, Franks has led Denver to an unbeaten league record in the Summit League (15-0-2) the last three seasons. The Pioneers, members of The Summit League since 2013, have won the regular season title all five years.
Fuller and Smith have played in a back four that allowed just nine shots in goal and two goals in Denver’s five league games in 2017. Smith also had a goal and an assist in league play, converting from the penalty spot in extra time in Denver’s 2-1 win over Omaha.
Underwood scored the game-winning goal at Western Illinois on November 4 to keep Denver both perfect in the Summit League in 2017, while also bringing the 2018 Summit League Men’s Soccer Championship back to the University of Denver Soccer Stadium next year.
UP NEXT: No. 1 seeded Denver will take on No. 4 Eastern Illinois in the first semifinal on Thursday in Omaha, set to kickoff at 2 p.m. CT/1 p.m. MT. The winner will take on the winner of No. 2 Western Illinois and No. 3 Omaha on Saturday at 2 p.m. CT/1 p.m. MT.
PIONEER MOVEMENT: Fans interested in making a donation to the men’s soccer program can do so by clicking here. Your contribution will make a direct impact on the success of YOUR Pioneers. Thank you in advance for your unwavering support of our student-athletes and their quest for excellence.
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Student-Athlete Alumni Giving Challenge:
In 2017-18, the University of Denver is holding an alumni giving challenge in an effort to increase student-athlete alumni participation in the Denver Athletics Annual Fund. The sport program with the highest percentage of alumni participation will receive an additional $10,000 of support through the generosity of an anonymous donor. Former student-athletes can make a gift online, by calling 303-871-2388 during normal business hours or by sending a check to:
Athletics Development Office
Attn: Kaley Rickert
2201 E. Asbury Avenue
Denver, CO 80208
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