Meghan Cavanaugh Earns Co-Rookie of the Year to Headline 2016 America East Women’s Soccer Yearly Awards
ALBANY, N.Y. – Meghan Cavanaugh has been honored as the America East Co-Rookie of the Year as six UAlbany women’s soccer players earned all-conference honors in the 2016 league yearly awards, the most in program history.
Cavanaugh is UAlbany’s second America East Rookie of the Year in three seasons, with Vivian Vega earning the award in 2014. UAlbany has had an America East Rookie of the Year four times since 2007.
Six UAlbany players earned all-conference honors, with Caitlyn Paltsios and Caroline Kopp being selected to the First Team. Cavanaugh, Vega, Kiana Rugar and Alexa Schneider were placed on the Second Team.
Six all-conference players are the most the UAlbany women’s soccer team has ever had in one year. UAlbany had five all-conference players in the 2009 season.
Cavanaugh started all 17 games for UAlbany, primarily at midfield, and is tied for the team lead in scoring with four goals and 12 points. The freshman and local product from Shenendehowa High netted three of her goals in league play, including two goals vs. Stony Brook and the game-winner at Maine on October 20th.
Paltsios earns her second all-conference team honor, being on the second team in 2014. A team captain, the senior started all 17 games in the midfield, switching between defensive and offensive plus taking free kicks and corner kicks, tallying three goals and three assists. Off the field, Paltsios was placed on the All-Academic Team for the third consecutive time with a 3.88 cumulative GPA in psychology.
Kopp, a 2015 NSCAA DI Women’s Northeast All-Region Team member, earns her first all-conference team selection. The sophomore has started all 17 games, primarily as a wing defender while also taking corners, and is tied for first in the America East with six assists, adding a golden goal vs. New Hampshire off a corner kick.
Rugar picks up her first-ever all-conference selection in 2016. UAlbany’s all-time assists leader, the redshirt junior played in 17 games with 12 starts at forward, tallying four goals and three assists, earning the game-winning goal in the second half vs. UMBC on October 23rd.
Schneider, along with Vega, is UAlbany’s first three-time all-conference player since Chelsea DeVerna in 2012. The senior team captain is tied for the team lead with four goals and 12 points, starting at 17 games in the midfield. She notched the game-winning assists in UAlbany’s first two league victories over Stony Brook and Binghamton. Schneider also earns a place on the All-Academic Team for the second time, holding a 3.81 cumulative GPA in human biology.
Vega has earned all-conference honors all three years in a UAlbany uniform. The junior has played in 15 games with 13 starts at forward, scoring four goals. Three of her goals were game-winners in league play, including against Stony Brook, Binghamton and Vermont.
Borasky has served as UAlbany’s primary goalkeeper this season, starting 12 games and earning seven victories and a draw. Through one season, she stands third in UAlbany history with 4.5 shutouts and is currently third in the America East with a 0.91 goals allowed average.
O’Neil has played in all 17 games for UAlbany with 14 starts primarily as a defender on the wing while also having a few games in the midfield. She has started every conference game this season and also plays up on corner kicks, standing with three shots, including two on goal.
The all-conference teams were released by the America East Conference on Wednesday. Cavanaugh shared Rookie of the Year honors with Sierra Stone of Hartford.
The rest of the major awards were: Brooke Murphy of UNH for Striker of the Year, Tori Tripp of Hartford for Midfielder of the Year, Caitlin Smallfield of Hartford for Defender of the Year, Jessica Jurg of Hartford for Goalkeeper of the Year and Stony Brook for Coaching Staff of the Year.
UAlbany is preparing to defend its America East title, hosting the semifinal round on Sunday, October 30th at 4 p.m. at Tom & Mary Casey Stadium. 1-seed UAlbany will either host 4-seed UNH or 5-seed Maine.
2016 America East Women’s Soccer All-Conference Teams – UAlbany
--Co-Rookie of the Year: Meghan Cavanaugh