Men’s Soccer to be Honored at Halftime of Wednesday’s Basketball Game
February 21, 2011
File Photo Courtesy of Mark Campbell
NEWARK, Del. – During the halftime break of the University of Delaware men’s basketball game on Wednesday night, which tips at 7 p.m. in the Bob Carpenter Center, another Blue Hen squad will be recognized for its achievements during the fall season.
After reaching the Colonial Athletic Association playoffs for the first time in program history, fifth-year head coach Ian Hennessy and his squad will be honored during the break on Wednesday night.
Not only did the program reach the CAA playoffs for the first time, but the Hens had two players named to the all-tournament team for the first time as well. Junior midfielder Evans Frimpong and Darren O’Connor we named to the All-Tournament team.
“I think some players are still starting to see how special the conference play was,” said Hennessy. “We had critical injuries in the first past of the year which was reflected in our out of conference results, but on their return the group showed a strengthened focus and tapped into a terrific team spirit.”
At the conclusion of the 2010 regular season, the Blue Hens had a program record four players named to the All-CAA team, including Frimpong and senior captain Jon Scheer. Both players were named to the second team, while O’Connor was named to the third team and freshman Vincent Mediate was selected to the All-Rookie team.
Reaching the playoffs in the CAA is not easy. As a conference, the CAA was ranked 6th in the rankings percentage index (RPI) out of the nation’s 23 Division I conference. The Hens picked up at least one point over seven of the conference’s teams ranked in the RPI’s top 100. Delaware defeated Old Dominion, who finished with a #29 RPI, defending conference champion UNC Wilmington (#53) for the first time in program history, Towson (#58), Drexel (#99) and Virginia Commonwealth (#82) to seal the No. 4 seed in the CAA playoffs. Delaware played to a 0-0 draw with Hofstra (#53) and George Mason (#64).
In the semifinals of the conference tournament, Delaware pushed the top seeded host No. 14 William & Mary, a team that advanced to the third round of the NCAA tournament, to double overtime before the Tribe picked up the game-winning goal with 30 seconds remaining.
Hennessy, a former Major League Soccer player believes that the close location of the new Philadelphia Union stadium and the blossoming of the MLS adds to the appeal of coming to school at UD.
"There are many indicators of the competitiveness of conferences and one of them is players being drafted by the MLS,” said Hennessy. “Since I arrived at UD the CAA has had 3 or 4 players drafted on a yearly basis into the professional ranks. I think this is good for potential UD players to know, because you are getting some of the best competition the country has to offer when you come to our campus, on top of a first-class education. I also feel it is an incentive for current players to know that there are MLS scouts in the stands of the best conferences in the country, and the CAA is right up there”.
Delaware returns to the pitch for its spring season, featuring games against Villanova, who tied for third in the BIGEAST during the regular season, the Patriot League’s Army, Loyola out of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Monmouth, the two-time Northeast Conference champions, and the Atlantic 10’s Saint Joseph’s.
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