by Jeff Husted

MVP Award to be Announced at Game Two

KANSAS CITY (April 6, 2017) – After one of the most memorable regular seasons in recent arena soccer history, the Major Arena Soccer League announced recognition for the league’s top performers. These players helped their teams to success all season and set the bar for future players to follow.

The awards were announced at today’s press conference prior to the opening of the Ron Newman Cup Championship Series. Commissioner Josh Schaub and Vice President of Operations Jon Ramin announced the winners of the following awards: Rookie of the Year, Goalkeeper of the Year, Defender of the Year and Coach of the Year.

The league’s top honor, MASL MVP, will be announced in a special ceremony at Game Two in the Ron Newman Cup Championships in Sonora, Mexico.

The full list of winners are:

Rookie of the Year – Stephen Paterson (Kansas City Comets)
Stephen Paterson quickly earned the respect of the Comets faithful with his on-field play and fearless attitude in the net. Paterson was the only goalkeeper in the league to post a shutout in the season, he led all rookies in goals against average (4.56) and was second in the league in wins (15). Paterson also chipped in offensively, tallying three assists and two goals.

Goalkeeper of the Year – Chris Toth (San Diego Sockers)
The San Diego Sockers have a long tradition of winning, and Chris Toth has been a central factor in that success for many years. In 2016-2017 Toth led the league in save percentage (.815) and was second in the league in goals against average (3.66).

Defender of the Year – Stephen Basso (Harrisburg Heat)
The Harrisburg Heat experienced the greatest turn-around in the league this season as they qualified for the playoffs for the first time in modern franchise history. Defender Stephen Basso was critical to the team’s success in his first year with the team, helping the young roster to remain calm and focused and also led the league with 53 blocks along the way.

Coach of the Year – Denison Cabral (Harrisburg Heat)
Denison Cabral took over a Harrisburg Heat team that only won a single game last season. He immediately put his stamp on the team by bringing in a mixture of young talent and veteran leadership to fill out his roster. The players bought into his system of play and together they secured their first win against the Baltimore Blast in modern club history and their first berth in the MASL Playoffs.