All-SAC teams include 6 Railsplitters, 4 Lady ‘Splitters
ROCK HILL, S.C. — Headlined by senior Mario Pinto’s first team selection, six players from the Lincoln Memorial University men’s soccer team were represented on the 2013 All-South Atlantic Conference teams released on Wednesday. Along with Pinto, Yuri Passos, Leonardo da Silva and Callum Home garnered second team distinctions, while Marcel Barwanietz and George Burne earned honorable mention accolades.
The Railsplitters completed the regular with a 9-7-2 overall mark and a 6-4-1 ledger in SAC play, earning the No. 4 seed for the Food Lion SAC Championship. The ‘Splitters advanced to the semifinals of the conference tournament on Tuesday with a 4-2 penalty kick shootout victory over the fifth-seeded Coker Cobras.
Senior striker Mario Pinto was LMU’s only All-South Atlantic Conference First Team selection as he earns that distinction for the third consecutive season. Pinto amassed a team-leading 15 goals while matching the team lead with four assists in 17 appearances on the pitch. Pinto is the school’s career leader with 49 goals.
Junior midfielder Yuri Passos matched the team lead with four assists this season while getting off 22 shots and and scoring one goal.
Sophomore Leonardo da Silva has tallied five goals and three assists, ranking second on the team with 13 total points. He was second on the squad and fourth in the conference with 63 shots and two of Da Silva’s goals were game-winners.
Senior defender Callum Home earned All-SAC recognition for the third straight season. He was the vocal and physical leader for a defensive unit that carried a 1.39 goals against average and posted four shutouts. The senior defender served that role while adding two goals.
Junior netminder Marcel Barwanietz was named honorable mention All-SAC after playing 1659:24 of a possible 1691:56 minutes in goal. He finished the season with a 1.36 goals against average and 64 saves.
Also receiving an honorable mention was freshman George Burne. Burne ranked third on the team this season with 10 points, 41 shots and 13 shots on goal. He added three goals while matching a team-high with four assists.
The Railsplitters will meet top-seeded Queens at 4 p.m. today in semifinals of the SAC Championship in Rock Hill, S.C.
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For the LMU women, senior defender Sam Adams was named to the All-South Atlantic Conference first team and three other Lady Railsplitters earned All-SAC honors. Along with Adams, freshman Michelle Hunter earned second team distinctions while Nicole McKinney and Olivia Thompson received honorable mentions.
Lincoln Memorial finished with a 6-5 league record, earning the No. 5 seed for the Food Lion South Atlantic Conference Championship. On Tuesday, Lady Railsplitters advanced to the semifinals of that event for the first time since 2007 with a 2-1 win over fourth-seeded Catawba. The Lady Railsplitters moved to 9-7-1 on the season with the win.
Adams, who was named second team All-SAC last year, appeared in all 17 matches and ranked third on the team with 1,492 minutes. She was a force for LMU’s defensive unit all season as she led a group which finished fourth in the conference with a 1.04 goals against average and 18 total goals allowed. The Adams-led Lady Railsplitters posted seven shutouts while allowing only one goal in four other matches. While serving her vital role on the defensive end of the field, Adams carded an assist, six shot attempts and three shots on goal.
Hunter, a freshman forward, had a stellar debut season with the Lady Railsplitters scoring a team-high eight goals while matching the team-lead with two assists. Hunter finished the regular season ranked fourth in the conference in goals, sixth in points with 18 and sixth in shots with 51. Three of her goals were game-winners.
McKinney was named to the 2013 Capital One Academic All-District Team on Oct. 31, and the junior forward added an All-SAC honorable mention to those accolades. She finished among the SAC leaders in several offensive categories this season, ranking 10th with six goals, 12th with 14 points and fifth in shots with 52.
Thompson, a sophomore, had breakout season in 2013. Despite only appearing in 14 matches with 686 minutes played, she finished third on the team with five goals and 12 points. Thompson also churned out two assists, 28 shots and 16 shots on goal over the course of the season.
The Lady Railsplitters will meet top seed Lenoir-Rhyne in Friday’s SAC semifinals at 7 p.m. in Rock Hill.
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