Wisconsin Soccer nabs three individual Big Ten honors - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Wisconsin Soccer nabs three individual Big Ten honors

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ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Big Ten Conference announced the 2015 women’s soccer All-Big Ten teams and individual honors Friday, with Co-Big Ten Champion Wisconsin earning three individual accolades. The Badgers’ Rose Lavelle was selected as the Midfielder of the Year, Victoria Pickett collected Freshman of the Year honors and Paula Wilkins claimed Coach of the Year plaudits. Minnesota’s Simone Kolander was named Forward of the Year, while Rutgers’ Casey Murphy and Erica Skroski were tabbed Goalkeeper and Defender of the Year, respectively.

Kolander leads the Big Ten in goals (seven), including six game-winning goals, five of which came in conference games. The 2014-15 Academic All-Big Ten honoree was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 22.

A unanimous All-Big Ten first-team selection, Lavelle finished the regular season with 17 points, including seven goals and three assists. This honor marks her third All-Big Ten selection.

Skroski anchored a back line that held its opponents to 7.6 shots per game and five goals. The 2014-15 Academic All-Big Ten honoree was a second-team All-Big Ten defender last season and an All-Tournament Team honoree.

Murphy leads the conference in shutouts (14) and goals against average (.27) in all games, and also ranks first in goals against average (.44) for conference only games. Murphy earned All-Freshman honors last season, and Defensive Player of the Week plaudits three times in 2015.

Pickett started in 15 matches in her debut campaign, scoring two goals to go along with four assists. The midfielder earned Freshman of the Week honors on Oct. 13.

At the helm of the program, Wilkins led the Badgers to an 11-5-3 record, including a mark of 8-2-1 in Big Ten play. Wisconsin and Penn State shared the Big Ten Championship, with the Badgers earning the No. 2 seed in the Big Ten Tournament. This year’s honor marks Wilkins’ first Big Ten Coach of the Year award at Wisconsin, and sixth overall. The last Wisconsin coach to earn the accolade was Dean Duerst in 1996.

Kolander, Lavelle, Murphy and Skroski earned spots on the All-Big Ten first team and were joined by Michigan’s Corinne Harris, Christina Murillo and Ani Sarkisian, Michigan State’s Mary Katherine Fiebernitz, Penn State’s Raquel Rodriguez and Mallory Weber and Rutgers’ Brianne Reed. 

The Big Ten Tournament opens with four quarterfinal games hosted by Northwestern, Penn State, Rutgers and Wisconsin on Sunday. Semifinals and the Championship Match will be held at the site of the highest remaining seed on Nov. 6 and Nov. 8, respectively.         

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