LANGLEY, British Columbia – Trinity Western men’s soccer midfielder Brayden Gant (Maple Ridge, B.C.) was named a Canada West Second Team All-Star at the Canada West Awards Reception hosted by the Saskatchewan Huskies at the Saskatoon Inn on Thursday evening.
The fourth-year Gant started all of the 11 games he played and was the Spartans leader in the middle of the park throughout the season.
This is the fourth time he has been named a Canada West all-star. He was previously a Second Team All-Star twice and a First Team All-Star, in 2012, once.
The big winner at the awards night was Navid Mashinchi, a fifth-year midfielder for the UBC Thunderbirds men’s soccer team, who was named the 2014 Canada West Most Valuable Player.
Mashinchi led the T-Birds to a 9-2-1 record and their consecutive Pacific Division title.
A Sauder School of Business student, Mashinchi scored eight goals in nine regular season games, which tied him for second in the league. The Port Moody, B.C., native also led the Canada West with nine assists to tie for first in the conference with 17 points.
“We are thrilled to see Navid receive this prestigious award in this his final season at UBC,” said head coach Mike Mosher. “Navid has been a top player in Canada West now for many seasons and this is a nice way to top off his university career following a very successful season in league play so far. Navid has also been a great teammate through his years and will go down as one of the nicest guys to come through our program.”
Along with the MVP honour, Mashinchi was also named to the Canada West’s First All-Star Team for the fourth time in his career. The Port Moody, B.C., native is a Sauder School of Business student and a former Vancouver Whitecaps player.
Mashinchi is the third T-Bird in a row to win the MVP award after Gagan Dosanjh (2012) and Reynold Stewart (2013).
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR. Mashinchi’s teammate on the T-Birds, Chris Serban, was named the 2014 Canada West Rookie of the Year today.
The Calgary native becomes the second UBC Thunderbirds player in a row to be named the Canada West Rookie of the Year.
At just 18 years old, Serban quickly became an integral of the UBC defence, which surrendered a league-low seven goals during the season. He started all 11 games in which he appeared, and rarely left the field. Serban played all but 16 minutes in his 11 regular season appearances. Offensively, he chipped in with two assists
“Chris has had a terrific first season at UBC and in Canada West,” said UBC head coach Mike Mosher. “He was one of our top performers each and every game this season. He epitomizes what a good outside defender should be – quick, strong defensively, a good range of passing to keep possession and an ability to get forward and join the attack.”
Serban is a student in the Sauder School of Business. He came to the UBC program after graduating from the Vancouver Whitecaps Residency Program. Serban also played for the Whitecaps U-23 Premier Development League squad last year.
COACH OF THE YEAR. For the second time in his career, University of Saskatchewan men’s soccer head coach Bryce Chapman has been named Canada West Coach of the Year.
Chapman, in his 11th year at the helm of the Huskies, led the team to a historic season. The Huskies set program benchmarks with a 9-1-2 record, finished first for the first time and finished in a hosting spot for the conference postseason for the first time. Saskatchewan was undefeated until the final weekend of the 2014 season.
“Bryce’s evolution as a coach over the past number of years is exemplary,” said U of S athletic director Basil Hughton. “He continues to learn and grow in his role and has become a well-respected coach within Canada West and the CIS. This recognition is truly deserving.”
In his 11 seasons with the Huskies, Chapman has guided the program to a Canada West Championship medal in three of the last four seasons – including two silvers and one bronze. He coached the team to its first-ever appearance in the CIS Championship in 2013 and has had two Canada West MVP’s during his tenure.
STUDENT-ATHLETE COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD. Luigi Bekwayo has been a leader on and off the pitch for the University of Saskatchewan Huskies this season and was honoured by the conference with the Student-Athlete Community Service Award.
Bekwayo has helped the Huskies to their third straight playoff appearance and a program-best 9-1-2 record. The fourth-year striker has tallied five goals and four assists in 11 matches. He was also named a Canada West Second Team All-Star in 2014.
A three-time Huskie All-Academic, the Arts & Science student has always made time for others and worthwhile causes. Bekwayo is the President of Athletes in Action, a ministry division of Power of Change that focuses on sport. He also coaches U10 Community Soccer for the Briarwood Community Association and volunteers with Awanna Kids Club Saskatoon at Full Gospel Church.
“Luigi is an unbelievable young person,” said head coach Bryce Chapman. “He has such a passion to be a positive role model and leader, not only in our dressing room, but throughout our community. Balancing his time with his family, volunteering in the community and the demands of being a student-athlete shows the type of character he is. Luigi has made our program better in all ways.”
FIRST & SECOND ALL-STAR TEAMS.
The 2014 Canada West Men’s Soccer First and Second All-Star Teams were announced, including five UBC Thunderbirds (four on the First Team), four Victoria Vikes (all on the First Team) and four Saskatchewan Huskies (two on the First Team). The Alberta Golden Bears and Calgary Dinos each had three players named to the Second Team, while the Fraser Valley Cascades had one player each on the First and Second Teams. The Trinity Western Spartans had one player recognized.
UBC’s Mashinchi, Paul Clerc, Bryan Fong, Niall Cousens and Sean Einarsson, Saskatchewan’s Jordian Farahani and Brett Levis, Victoria’s Cam Stokes and Cam Hundal, Alberta’s Niko Saler and Trinity Western’s Brayden Gant all repeat as conference All-Stars after another stellar individual seasons by each.
They’re joined by first-time All-Stars Noah Pawloski and Alex Redpath from Victoria, Colton O’Neill and Ryan Liddiard from Fraser Valley, Bekwayo and Michal Bandula from Saskatchewan, Dominick Zator, Andrew Hood and Dominic Russo from Calgary, and Tim Hickson and Christopher Gilroy from Alberta.
FAIR PLAY AWARD. The UBC Thunderbirds were also given their second consecutive Fair Play Award for having the best discipline record in the conference.
The Canada West Final Four kicks off on Friday, October 31 when the Alberta Golden Bears face the UBC Thunderbirds at 11:30 am CT. The Victoria Vikes and the Saskatchewan Huskies vie for the other finalist slot at 2:00 pm CT.
Complete list of 2014 Canada West Men’s Soccer Awards winners:
Most Valuable Player: Navid Mashinchi, UBC
Rookie of the Year: Chris Serban, UBC
Coach of the Year: Bryce Chapman, Saskatchewan
Student-Athlete Community Service Award: Luigi Bekwayo, Saskatchewan
Fair Play Award: UBC
2014 Canada West First Team All-Stars:
Noah Pawloski, Victoria
Paul Clerc, UBC
Bryan Fong, UBC
Alex Redpath, Victoria
Jordian Farahani, Saskatchewan
Colton O’Neill, Fraser Valley
Navid Mashinchi, UBC
Brett Levis, Saskatchewan
Cam Stokes, Victoria
Niall Cousens, UBC
Cam Hundal, Victoria
2014 Canada West Second Team All-Stars:
Michal Bandula, Saskatchewan
Ryan Liddiard, Fraser Valley
Niko Saler, Alberta
Dominick Zator, Calgary
Tim Hickson, Alberta
Christopher Gilroy, Alberta
Andrew Hood, Calgary
Dominic Russo, Calgary
Sean Einarsson, UBC
Brayden Gant, Trinity Western
Luigu Bekwayo, Saskatchewan