'Caps at College - Week 12

'Caps alumni scoop plenty of Conference awards

It’s been an award-winning week for several Vancouver Whitecaps FC alumni, with all four major individual honours in the Canada West competition being scooped up by past and present members of the club.

UBC Thunderbirds strikers Gagandeep Dosanjh and Janine Frazao took home the Canada West Player of the Year awards in the men’s and women’s competitions while Alberta Golden Bears defender Niko Saler won Rookie of the Year and former Whitecaps FC coach Pat Rohla was named Coach of the Year.

On top of their prestigious individual honours, Dosanjh, Frazao and Saler also received All-Star nods for the Canada West division.

Trinity Western University goalkeeper Kristen Funk (pictured) won the Canada West student-athlete award while fellow Spartans Jennifer Castillo and Final Four MVP Natalie Boyd secured All-Star berths.

Finishing off the ‘Caps alums swag of awards, University of South Florida midfielder Taylor Patterson was named to the All-Big East first team after an exceptional season with the Bulls.

MEN

Ben McKendry scored his fourth goal of the season in University of New Mexico’s 6-0 thrashing of Houston Baptist.

McKendry headed home at the far post to give Lobos one of their five first half goals.

Golden Bears defender Saler finished the 2012-13 season with one goal and three assists but it was his composure on the ball and his strong defending that earned him Rookie of the Year honours according to University of Alberta coach Len Vickery.

Rohla guided Trinity Western University to a 9-1-4 regular season record and a spot in the Canada West bronze medal match, while over at UBC, Dosanjh was joined in the Canada West All-Star First Team by fellow ‘Caps alums William Hyde and Navid Mashinchi.

Dosanjh had a superb season, leading the Canada West in goals (12), assists (9) and points (21).

The U-23 PDL team representative capped off a memorable season with his double-overtime winner clinching a 2-1 win and the Canada West championship for the Thunderbirds against Saler’s Golden Bears in Alberta on November 4.

Dosanjh scored the match-winner in the 101st minute after finding a way through Alberta’s stubborn defence.

WOMEN

Natalie Boyd led Trinity Western University to their second straight – and fifth overall - Canada West championship title after an exciting 2-1 win over University of Victoria in the final.

Spartans goalkeeper Kristen Funk made four saves to ensure TWU entered the upcoming CIS championship as Canada West’s No. 1 team.

Funk received more good news when she was named top student-athlete in Canada West while defender Jennifer Castillo and midfielder Byrne made the CW All-Star first team.

Funk led the conference with 11 wins, nine shutouts and a paltry goals against average of 0.33.

Frazao was named Canada West Player of the Year for the second season in a row after scoring 13 goals in 2012. The fourth year student was also selected as an All-Star.

After missing out on making the Canada West championship match, the T-Birds regained their focus to defeat Regina Cougars 1-0 and take home bronze for the second straight year.

‘Caps alum Taylor Shannik provided the game-winning assist just three minutes into the contest on Saturday afternoon.

Goalkeeper Erin McNulty’s Penn State team earned the No.1 seed in the NCAA tournament after finishing the regular season with an impressive 17-3-1 record. The Nittany Lions open their tournament campaign Saturday at home to Long Island-Brooklyn.

Down to Florida, where Patterson’s five assists as well as her contributions to a USF defence that posted 10 shutouts in the regular season earned her a spot on the All-Big East first team.

And lastly at Washington State, goalkeeper Gurveen Clair played 45 minutes, made four saves and was credited the win as her team beat arch-rival Washington 1-0 on Friday. Fellow ‘Cap Nicole Setterlund was involved in the build-up that led to the winning goal.