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Ruiz Player of the Year; 9 Award Winners

Published: November 2, 2016

LAKEPOINT, Ga. – Coming off the most explosive offensive regular season in FGCU men’s soccer history by a wide margin, junior Albert Ruiz highlighted nine ASUN Conference postseason awards for the Eagles on Wednesday by being named the ASUN Player of the Year.

Ruiz – who leads the nation in goals with 17 and points with 39 – is the second-consecutive FGCU product to garner ASUN Player of the Year honors as current Columbus Crew SC midfielder Rodrigo Saravia claimed the award last year, the first such recognition in the program’s young, but extremely successful, history.

Ruiz is joined on the ASUN First Team by fellow striker Arion Sobers-Assue, central midfielder Kamar Marriott and defensive stalwart Nicolas Samayoa as the Green and Blue placed a league-high four members on the First Team for the third-straight year.

Midfielder Dylan Sacramento and central defender Eli Roubos both earned a spot on the ASUN Second Team. The Eagles had three players receive ASUN All-Freshman Team honors in unanimous selection Miguel Perez, forward Shak Adams and goalkeeper Jared Brown, continuing an unbelievable run of program-founding head coach Bob Butehorn and his staffing producing at least two All-Freshman performers in all 10 years of the program’s existence.

The nine all-conference performers – eight of whom are underclassmen – are tied with last year for the most in FGCU program history, and are matched this season by only North Florida. In a further testament to Butehorn and his staff recruiting and developing young talent, no other team in the ASUN has even produced two or more All-Freshman Team members each of the last two seasons, but the Eagles have done it for the last decade.

“Albert has proven to be one of the best, if not the best, striker in the nation, and his Player of the Year honor is certainly well-deserved. He has put it so much hard work to improve since getting to FGCU, and it’s great to see him rightfully rewarded,” stated Butehorn. “It’s also fantastic to see so many other guys receive recognition. For us to have nine players on all-conference teams for the second-straight year speaks volumes to the depth on the roster, talent that each guy has and the effort and work they’ve put forth.

"But I know all of our guys will attest that the individual honors don’t mean as much without an ASUN Championship,” Butehorn continued. “That’s our next goal this season, and we’re looking forward to getting that pursuit started on Saturday night in front of our home fans.”

Below are snapshots of each of FGCU’s all-conference winners, with additional information about the Eagles’ 2016 season and upcoming ASUN Tournament matches.

Albert Ruiz (Barcelona, Spain/ CE L’Hospitalet/UE Cornella)

Ruiz has already shattered the FGCU single-season record for goals (17, previous record: 7) and points (39, previous record: 17), with the goal total representing the most by any ASUN player in the last decade. With the exception of teammate Sobers-Assue’s 11 goals, Ruiz has eight more goals than anyone else in the ASUN this year. Additionally, he has 18 more points than any other player in the league, again with the exception being Sobers-Assue’s 29.

A two-time National Player of the Week this year, Ruiz recorded two hat tricks this season just 10 days apart to become the first player in program history with a pair of three-goal games. His first came in record-setting fashion on Sept. 24 at Rutgers when he scored all three of his goals by the 9:02 mark, and is believed to have recorded the fastest hat trick – in terms of time from the start of the game – in Division-I history.

Coming off an ASUN First Team selection last year and ASUN All-Freshman Team performance in 2014, Ruiz joins just FC Dallas defender Aaron Guillen (2013-15) and FC Edmonton forward Cristian Raudales (2009-11) as the only three-time ASUN honorees from FGCU. If he lands on an ASUN team next season, Ruiz would become just the fourth player in the history of the league – which dates back to 1979 for men’s soccer – to be a four-time all-conference performer.

Arion Sobers-Assue (Miami, Fla./DeMatha Catholic HS)

Following closely behind Ruiz’s exploits this year was Sobers-Assue as the redshirt sophomore posted a terrific bounce-back year after missing all of last season following knee surgery. If not for Ruiz’s goal and point totals, Sobers-Assue’s 11 goals and 29 points would be single-season program records. In addition to ranking 2nd in both of those categories in the ASUN, Sobers-Assue is tied for 8th in the nation in goals and tied for 7th in the country in points.

Sobers-Assue secured a hat trick of his own in a 5-1 win over FAU on Sept. 20. In three games alone (Sept. 20 vs. FAU (6 points), Sept. 27 at Rutgers (5 points) and Oct. 14 vs. Stetson (5 points)), he posted 16 points, which is more points than all but four players in the ASUN had all year.

Nicolas Samayoa (Guatemala City, Guatemala/Colegio Valle Verde)

After landing on the ASUN Second Team last year, Samayoa garners an ASUN First Team honor this season as he was one of just two FGCU players (Robert Ferrer) to start all 17 games. The right back logged the 2nd-most minutes on the Eagles’ roster with 1,391, just 16 shy of Marriott’s team-leading mark. Samayoa – who has started all 48 career matches he’s appeared in – scored a goal and added an assist while helping FGCU’s backline hold ASUN opponents to just six goals this year, tied for the fewest league play.

Kamar Marriott (Tampa, Fla./Heritage HS)

The only player on the FGCU roster to log more time during the regular season than Samayoa was Marriott, who garners his first ASUN postseason award. Serving as the “1” in what proved to be FGCU’s lethal 3-1-4-2 formation, Marriott controlled the middle of the pitch for the Eagles. His lone goal of the year came in the regular-season finale as he headed home a corner in what proved to be the only strike of the evening for the Eagles at Lipscomb on Saturday night. The 1-1 draw gave FGCU hosting responsibilities for one of Saturday’s ASUN Tournament semifinal matches.

Dylan Sacramento (Winnipeg, Manitoba/York University/Bill Crothers S.S.)

Sacramento, who transferred from York University after his sophomore year, lands on the ASUN Second Team for the second-straight year. Plagued by a quad injury which forced him to miss five games, Sacramento still managed to finish 3rd on FGCU with 11 points off four goals and three assists – one of only 10 players in the ASUN to record double-figure points. His best game was a five-point outing at NJIT as he tallied a pair of goals and added an assist in FGCU’s 4-1 ASUN-opening win over the Highlanders.

Eli Roubos (Toronto, Ontario/Oregon State/Northview Heights Secondary)

Another player who battled through an injury which forced him to miss the first 10 games of the season, Roubos returned to the lineup as a key defender for the Eagles for the final seven matches, including five of their six ASUN contests. In addition to helping anchor a defensive unit which allowed a league-low-tying six goals in ASUN matches, Roubos came off the bench to deliver a game-tying goal versus USF on Oct. 11 and issued the lone assist on an insurance strike in a victory over USC Upstate on Oct. 22.

Miguel Perez (Weston, Fla./Cypress Bay HS)

One of just two freshmen to play all 17 matches, Perez provided the Eagles with a talented outside midfield threat. He finished the regular season with two goals and three assists for seven points to rank tied for 7th on an FGCU team which leads the nation in nearly every offensive category. His first collegiate goal was a game-winner at Rutgers, and that spearheaded a three-game point streak as he added an assist in each of the next two matches. He tallied an insurance strike opposite Stetson on Oct. 14 and had the lone assist on Marriott’s aforementioned goal at Lipscomb.

Shak Adams (Antioch, Tenn./Cane Ridge HS)

Perhaps the most dangerous freshman substitute in the ASUN, Adams appeared in all 17 matches off the bench, scoring four times. Three of those four goals were of the game-winning variety, tying him for the most in the ASUN. He scored twice at FIU on Oct. 4, added the game-winner a week later against USF and concluded his winning form with a strike at Jacksonville on Oct. 25 to lead the Eagles to a 2-1 victory. His four goals – which came in just 521 minutes of action – were tied for the 3rd-most on the team with Sacramento.

Jared Brown (Aurora, Ontario/St. Maximilian Kolbe CHS)

After Butehorn alternated starting goalkeepers the first four games of the year, Brown was in net on Sept. 20, but then not again for another month when he started each of FGCU’s final three games. During that stretch, the Eagles out-scored their competition, 6-2, with Brown making 12 saves, including seven in the finale at Lipscomb. He finished the year with a 1.13 goals-against average in just more than 550 minutes, but in ASUN action Brown posted a 0.63 goals-against average – which was good for the 2nd-best in the league. Additionally, his .857 save percentage in league play was also the 2nd-best in the conference as he concluded ASUN action with a 2-0-1 record.

SEASON SUMMARY

FGCU (12-3-2, 4-1-1 ASUN) concluded another standout regular season as the Green and Blue are one win shy of matching the program’s single-season record of 13 set in 2010. Dating back to that 2010 campaign, the Eagles have a dominant 40-5-5 record in all ASUN regular-season games. Out of a possible 150 points that could have been earned in that time, the Green and Blue have claimed an impressive 125 of them (83.3 percent).

The Eagles are tied for the 4th-most wins in the nation and are ranked #20 this week in the highly-respected College Soccer News National Poll, in addition to appearing at #22 in the NSCAA poll, which is the only poll the NCAA officially recognizes. Earlier this year, FGCU – which leads the country in goals (52, next closest: 42) and points (146, next closest: 132) – had the longest active winning streak in D-I as it rattled off 10 in a row from Sept. 4-Oct. 14.

ASUN TOURNAMENT

The No. 2-seeded Eagles will host an ASUN Tournament quarterfinal match between No. 3 seed Lipscomb and No. 6 seed Stetson on Thursday, Nov. 3, at 7 p.m. at the FGCU Soccer Complex. The winner of that game will play FGCU in a semifinal game on Saturday, Nov. 5, at 7 p.m.

On the other side of the bracket, No. 1 seed North Florida will host No. 4 seed NJIT and No. 5 seed Jacksonville in a quarterfinal on Friday, Nov. 4, before playing either the Highlanders or Dolphins in the other semifinal on Sunday, Nov. 6. The highest remaining seed will host the ASUN Tournament Final on Saturday, Nov. 12.

ASUN POSTSEASON AWARD WINNERS

Player of the Year: Albert Ruiz, FGCU

Defensive Player of the Year: Jay Bolt, North Florida

Goalkeeper of the Year: Paul Ladwig, Stetson

Freshman of the Year: Adrian Nunez, North Florida*

Coaching Staff of the Year: North Florida

* Denotes a unanimous selection

ASUN FIRST TEAM ALL-CONFERENCE

Pos.

Name

School

Cl.

Hometown  

GK

Paul Ladwig

Stetson

Sr.

Rostock, Germany

D

Nicolas Samayoa

FGCU

Jr.

Guatemala City, Guatemala

D

Joe Kerridge

Lipscomb

Jr.

Golden, Colo.

D

Jay Bolt

North Florida

Sr.

Jacksonville, Fla.

MF

Kamar Marriott

FGCU

Jr.

Tampa, Fla.

MF

Ivan Alvarado

Lipscomb

Jr.

Fort Worth, Texas

MF

Joshua Castellanos

North Florida

Jr.

Ponte Vedra, Fla.

F

Albert Ruiz

FGCU

Jr.

Barcelona, Spain

*F

Arion Sobers-Assue

FGCU

R-So.

Miami, Fla.

F

Logan Paynter

Lipscomb

So.

Bradenton, Fla.

F

Adrian Nunez

North Florida

Fr.

San Jose, Costa Rica

* Denotes a unanimous selection

ASUN SECOND TEAM ALL-CONFERENCE

Pos.

Name

School

Cl.

Hometown  

GK

Juanes Fajardo

North Florida

Sr.

Winter Garden, Fla

D

Eli Roubos

FGCU

Jr.

Toronto, Ontario

D

Scout Monteith

Lipscomb

Jr.

Charlotte, N.C.

D

Victor Kausch

NJIT

Sr.

Berlin, Germany

D

Simen Solstad

North Florida

Sr.

Baerum, Norway

MF

Dylan Sacramento

FGCU

Sr.

Winnipeg, Manitoba

MF

Alberto Escobedo

Jacksonville

So.

Chihuahua, Mexico

MF

Micah Smoak

North Florida

Jr.

Melbourne, Fla.

MF

Luke Ferreira

Stetson

Jr.

Deerfield Beach, Fla

F

Ivan Sakou

Lipscomb

Jr.

Yaounde, Cameroon

F

Mamadou Guirassy

NJIT

Jr.

Paris, France

F

Milan Kovas

North Florida

Sr.

Bonyhad, Hungary

** A tie in voting led to a 12-man Second Team

ASUN ALL-FRESHMAN TEAM

Pos.

Name

School

Hometown

*F

Adrian Nunez

North Florida

San Jose, Costa Rica

*MF

Miguel Perez

FGCU

Weston, Fla.

*MF

Kai Bennett

Jacksonville

Smyrna, Ga.

*F

Rene White

NJIT

Bloomfield, N.J.

*F

Gabriel Diniz

Stetson

Goiania, Brazil

F

Shak Adams

FGCU

Antioch, Tenn.

GK

Jared Brown

FGCU

Aurora, Ontario

D

Austin Eager

Lipscomb

Carrollton, Texas

MF

Andrew Nino

NJIT

Union City, N.J.

GK

Victor Pujades

NJIT

Castellon, Spain

MF

Cormac Begley

North Florida

Oviedo, Fla.

F

Joel Bunting

USC Upstate

Charleston, S.C

* Denotes a unanimous selection

** A tie in voting led to a 12-man All-Freshman Team

FOLLOW ALONG

For up-to-the minute information and a behind-the-scenes look at the FGCU men’s soccer program, follow on Twitter @FGCU_MSoccer, Instagram @FGCU_MSoccer, Facebook /FGCUMSoccer and YouTube /FGCUAthletics.

COACH BUTEHORN

FGCU is led by Bob Butehorn, who has coached six professional players and 63 ASUN All-Conference selections since FGCU started its program in 2007. In just five years of postseason eligibility, Butehorn has guided FGCU to three ASUN Tournament championships and NCAA Tournament appearances – in 2011, 2012 and 2014 – and won an unprecedented six-straight ASUN regular-season championships from 2010-15. His teams have been ranked nationally on several occasions by multiple media outlets, including a program-record #11 NSCAA ranking in 2016. Now in his 14th season as a head coach, Butehorn has a 127-93-27 (.569) overall record, 93-61-23 (.590) mark in his 10th season at FGCU and 52-18-7 (.721) record in ASUN contests.

SUPPORT THE CAUSE

FGCU Athletics sponsors events throughout the year to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU Athletics’ charities of choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry and utilize the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.

 
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