Aug. 11, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - For the second year in a row, Florida State defender/midfielder Becky Edwards and midfielder Amanda DaCosta will begin the season on the watch list for the Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy, presented to the nation's top collegiate player.
The watch list, which was announced by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) on Tuesday, August 11, includes 45 student-athletes. Florida State is one of 10 schools to have at least two players occupy a spot on the preseason list. The list also includes nine players from the ACC to lead all conferences.
"Becky, Amanda and a few others on this year's team are gaining the respect nationally that they deserve," said head coach Mark Krikorian. "These two individuals are among the top players in the country and they certainly deserve to be recognized with many of the other great players across the nation. The fact that Becky and Amanda are on the Hermann Trophy Watch List is a sign of respect that speaks to their level of play as well as the continued development of our program here at Florida State."
Edwards and DaCosta join a growing list of Seminole greats that have been named to the Hermann Trophy Watch List over the years. Florida State has had a student-athlete named to the watch list every year since 2004, while this year marks the third time in school history that two student-athletes have been named to the preseason list. In 2004, Leah Gallegos became the first Seminole stand out to make the list. She was then followed by Kelly Rowland (2005), Selin Kuralay (2006), India Trotter (2006) and Sarah Wagenfuhr (2007). Edwards and DaCosta were both named to the preseason watch list in 2008.
In 2007, Mami Yamaguchi became the first Seminole player to claim the top individual honor in women's soccer. She was named winner of the Hermann Trophy after leading the country in points (66), while finishing second in goals (24) and assists (18). Yamaguchi played a major role in Florida State's run to the 2007 National Championship game. The Tokyo, Japan native also made school history becoming the first FSU player to be named a finalist for the Hermann Trophy.
Edwards is in her final season at Florida State serving as team captain in 2009. She has played an integral role in the success of the Seminole defense over the last three years helping FSU post a combined 40 shutouts and a goals against average of 0.75. Edwards enters her senior season with 22 career points on five goals and 12 assists. The Downingtown, Pa., native missed last year's NCAA Tournament as she helped the United States' U-20 Women's National Team to a gold medal at the 2008 FIFA Youth World Cup. Edwards earned first team All-America and Scholar All-America honors from the NSCAA in 2009, while grabbing a spot on the All-ACC Second Team.
Looking to build off another successful year at Florida State, DaCosta joined an elite group of Seminoles following the 2008 season becoming just the third student-athlete in school history to earn first team All-America honors as a sophomore. She was named to the first team by both the NSCAA and Soccer Buzz. DaCosta was also the only Seminole to repeat as an all-conference honoree from 2007 as she received first team All-ACC accolades. The Katonah, N.Y., native finished the season fifth on the team in points with 14 recording four goals and six assists. She was involved in six game-winning situations in 2008 recording two game-winning goals and a team-high four game-winning assists. DaCosta has started every match for Florida State since arriving in Tallahassee in 2007, a span covering 50 consecutive games.
Considered the highest individual honor in intercollegiate soccer, the recipients of the MAC Hermann Trophy are selected by Division I coaches who are current members of the NSCAA. A list of 15 semifinalists will be selected by a coaches committee in November, with three finalists announced in early December. The three finalists will be invited to the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis, Mo., for a news conference on January 8, 2010, where the winner will be announced, with a presentation banquet following the ceremony.
In other related soccer news, Florida State will start the season ranked in the top 10. TopDrawerSoccer.com and the NSCAA have the Seminoles ranked at No. 6 in their respective preseason polls. FSU has reached the NCAA Quarterfinals in each of the last four seasons.