Mid-American Conference Men's Soccer All-Conference Teams Announced

Updated 11/4/1999
CLEVELAND (November 4) -- The University at Buffalo's Steve Butcher, a senior forward from North Tonawanda, N.Y., has been named the Mid-American Conference's Player of the Year by a vote of the league's head coaches. In addition, Torbjrn Birkeland, a sophomore forward from Bergen, Norway, and Byron Carmichael, a freshman forward from Lumberton, N.J., were named the league's Newcomers of the Year. Also, Ian Collins, head coach at the University of Kentucky, was named the Gary V. Palmisano Coach of the Year.

The University of Akron, the 12th ranked squad in the country, highlights the all-conference list with four first-team selections and two second-team choices, while Kentucky, which finished second to the Zips in the regular season, placed three student-athletes on the first-team and a fourth Wildcat garnered second-team accolades.

Butcher, one of two repeat selections to the first-team all-MAC squad from 1998, led the conference in scoring during the regular season with 36 points on 14 goals and eight assists. His goal total tied for tops in the league, while his assists per game average (0.47) is tied for third in the conference. The senior concluded the regular season with a goal in each of his last three contests and seven of his last eight.

Birkeland paced the Zips in scoring in his first year with the team with 21 points on seven goals and seven assists. His 1.31 points per game is fifth in the league heading into the MAC Men's Soccer Tournament, while his goals per game (0.46) is fifth and is sixth in assists per game (0.44) in the conference.

Carmichael, like Birkleland, also led his squad in scoring with 20 points and delivered nine goals, which is fourth in the league. The freshman helped the Thundering Herd to a fourth-place finish during the regular season after being slated to finish sixth in the preseason.

For the second time in the last three years, Kentucky's Ian Collins is named the Gary V. Palmisano MAC's Coach of the Year. Collins guided the Wildcats, which were picked to finish third in the MAC preseason poll, to a 10-6-1 overall record and a 5-1-1 mark in league play. UK finished second to Akron during the regular season.

Joining Butcher on the first team are Kyle Milligan (GK), Greg Prusha (D), rjan Bjnes (MF) and Birkeland of Akron, and Ilkka Jantti (MF), Giovanni Fernandes (MF) and Lee Baker (F), who was a repeat first-team all-MAC selection from 1998, of Kentucky. Also capturing first-team accolades are Fred Degand (D) and Chris Dore of Bowling Green, and Eastern Michigan's Jeff Beeler (MF).

On the MAC's second-team unit are: Eric Pogue (GK) of Western Michigan, Todd Stonestreet (D) of Kentucky, Wayne Bennett (D) of Marshall, Peter Agrimson (D), Andrew Conti (MF) and Dan Parisi (F) of Northern Illinois, Frank Ross (MF) and Christer Larsen (F) of Akron, Brian McCallion (MF) and Tim Songer (F) of Buffalo and Drew Drummond (MF) of Eastern Michigan.

Akron is the top seed in the MAC Tournament, which begins Friday, Nov. 5 in DeKalb, Ill.. with quarterfinal action. The semifinals are slated for Sunday, Nov. 7, with the championship match to be played the following weekend at the home field of the highest remaining seed.


FIRST TEAM
Pos.	     Player	        School	         Year	Hometown (High School)
Goalkeeper   Kyle Milligan	Akron	          So.	Independence, Ohio (Hudson)
Defense	     Greg Prusha	Akron	          Jr.	North Olmsted, Ohio (North Olmsted)
Defense	     Fred Degand	Bowling Green	  Jr.	Highland Park, Ill. (Deerfield)
Defense	     Jeff Beeler	Eastern Michigan  So.	Birmingham, Mich. (Brother Rice)
Midfield     rjan Bjnes	Akron	          So.	Bergen, Norway (Fana Gymnas)
Midfield     Chris Dore	Bowling Green	  Sr.	Vermillion, Ohio (Lorain Catholic)
Midfield     Ilkka Jantti	Kentucky	  So.	Lahti, Finland (Salpausselan Lakota)
Midfield     Giovanni Fernandes	Kentucky	  Jr.	Criciuma, Brazil (Adidas Academy)
Forward	     Torbjrn Birkeland	Akron	          So.	Bergen, Norway (Laksevaag Gymnas)
Forward	     Steve Butcher#	Buffalo	          Sr.	North Tonawanda, N.Y. (North Tonawanda)
Forward	     Lee Baker#	        Kentucky	  Sr.	Spring, Texas (Klein)

#repeat first-team all-MAC from 1998

SECOND TEAM
Pos.	     Player	        School	         Year	Hometown (High School)
Goalkeeper   Eric Pogue	        Western Michigan  Sr.	Troy, Mich. (Athens)
Defense	     Todd Stonestreet	Kentucky	  Sr.	Canton, Mich. (Plymouth Canton)
Defense	     Wayne Bennett	Marshall	  So.	Boksburg, South Africa (Jeppe)
Defense	     Peter Agrimson	Northern Illinois Fr.	Stillwater, Minn. (Stillwater Area)
Midfield     Frank Ross	        Akron	          Sr. 	Johanessburg, South Africa (West Ridge)
Midfield     Brian McCallion	Buffalo	          Jr.	Ballston Spa, N.Y. (Shenendehowa)
Midfield     Drew Drummond	Eastern Michigan  Sr.	Canton, Mich. (Plymouth Salem)
Midfield     Andrew Conti	Northern Illinois Fr.	Woodbridge, Ontario (Holy Cross)	
Forward	     Christer Larsen	Akron	          Jr.	Bergen, Norway (U. Pihl Gymnas)
Forward	     Tim Songer	        Buffalo	          Jr.	Liverpool, N.Y. (Liverpool)
Forward	     Dan Parisi 	Northern Illinois Jr.	Hanover Park, Ill. (Hoffman Estates)

GARY V. PALMISANO COACH OF THE YEAR:
Ian Collins, Kentucky

PLAYER OF THE YEAR:
Steve Butcher, Buffalo

NEWCOMERS OF THE YEAR:
Torbjrn Birkeland, Akron
Byron Carmichael, Marshall