POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. - A year after winning 13 games and earning seven All-MAAC awards, the 14-win Marist women's soccer team increased their collection of postseason honors to eight in the conference's 2012 award announcement Thursday afternoon. Senior Chelsea Botta (East Longmeadow, Mass.), junior Rycke Guiney (Naperville, Ill.) and Amanda Epstein (Jericho, N.Y.) led the list of honorees as the trio was voted onto the All-MAAC First Team.
Senior Jessica Arabia (Naperville, Ill.), juniors Kylee McIntosh (Cheshire, Conn.) and Samantha Panzner (Livingston, N.J.) and sophomore Marjana Maksuti (Delmar, N.Y.) earned spots on the All-MAAC Second Team, while freshman Alysa Murphy (Douglassville, Pa.) was selected to the All-Rookie Team.
After being chosen to the All-MAAC Second Team as a junior, Botta elevated her game to the status of First Team recognition in 2012. Coming into the season with eight career points, she finished the regular season with the third-most points on Marist with 11. Botta has scored four goals and added three assists through 20 games.
Guiney garnered All-MAAC honors for the third time in her career following a First Team nod in 2011 and a spot on the All-Rookie team in 2010. Her junior campaign has seen her compile the second-most points on the Red Foxes with 17 on seven goals and four assists. During her three years in Poughkeepsie she's recorded the third-most points in program history with 51.
The 2011 MAAC Rookie of the Year, Epstein was recognized as being one of the conference's most dangerous scorers. The team leader with 18 points on the year, she's tied with Guiney for the Red Fox lead with seven goals. A clutch player throughout her two seasons with Marist, Epstein has netted five game-winning goals this season and 13 for her career.
On the second team, the defensive duo of Arabia and McIntosh were two of five players from across the conference honored as all-conference backs. Together with Botta, senior Melanie Rigo (Huntington, N.Y.) and sophomore Marissa Mertens (Hicksville, N.Y.) the Red Foxes' defensive backfield posted a 1.08 goals against average. Arabia started and played in all 20 games as a senior, while McIntosh appeared in 19 games with 16 starts. Offensively, the three-time All-MAAC honoree, Arabia has added three assists. McIntosh is a two-time winner as she earned a spot on the All-MAAC Rookie Team in 2010.
Panzner and Maksuti were recognized as All-MAAC midfielders. A facilitator and a finisher, the duo posed two very different threats for opponents in 2012. While both finished with 10 points, Panzner scored her with two goals and a team-high six assists and Maksuti with five goals, the third-best total on the Red Foxes. These are the first all-conference honors for both.
Appearing in 18 games, the best amongst her fellow freshmen Red Foxes, Murphy was recognized on the All-Rookie Team. She registered two assists in her first season as she notched helpers versus Binghamton and Saint Peter's.
Marist also collected accolades for it's off the field success as 10 student-athletes were named to the MAAC All-Academic team. A quartet of three-time honorees led the group as Botta, Jackie Frey (Monroe, N.Y.), Nicole Kuhar (Oceanview, N.J.) and Caitlin Landsman (Burke, Va.) garnered awards. Two-time honorees include: Rigo and Panzner. Named to their first All-Academic team were, Arabia, Epstein, Mertens and Andrea Wicks (East Northport, N.Y.)
To be eligible for the MAAC All-Academic Team, a student athlete must have completed two semesters at their institution and hold a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 on a 4.0 scale.
The Red Foxes will be in action tomorrow evening as they face off with the #4 seed Iona Gaels in the second semi-final of the 2012 MAAC Women's Soccer Championship at 7 p.m. Marist College will host all three of the games involved with the championships.