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Quartet Named to All-Region Team

December 16, 2011 at 11:23 am

Abby Wills, Women's Soccer Action

Abby Wills was named to the All-Region First Team for the second time.

NSCAA All-North Region Team

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – While it’s been more than six weeks since Carleton College women’s soccer claimed its second straight MIAC title, the honors and awards continue to roll in. This week, seniors Abby Wills (Portland, Ore./St. Mary's), Niki Tomita (Redwood City, Calif./Woodside) and Lily VanderStaay (Bellingham, Wash.) and sophomore Layne Teska (Wilmette, Ill./New Trier) were named to the All-North Region Team by the National Soccer Coaches Association of American (NSCAA).

For the second straight season, Wills earned a spot on the 11-player all-region first team. She thrived wherever the Knights put her in the lineup this year, spending the first portion of the season limiting the opposition at defender or defensive midfielder, but she was moved to attacking midfielder mid-way through the campaign. In this new role, Wills tallied a goal and two assists and helped jumpstart another late-season surge for the Knights who went 7-0-1 over the second half of the regular-season en route to their second straight MIAC regular-season title. Earlier this fall, Wills earned all-conference honors for the fourth time and was named to the Academic All-District team.

Tomita received her third consecutive All-North squad, as she was voted to the all-region third team. Limited by injury earlier in the season, she eventually returned to the playing form that earned her distinction as the 2010 MIAC Player-of-the-Year honors. Tomita tallied three goals and four assists this year, raising her career totals to nine assists and 30 goals, the second-highest figure in program history.

VanderStaay also missed some time due to injury, yet still paced the Knights with 16 points and tied for the team lead with six goals as she picked up her second consecutive all-region third-team honor. She split time at midfielder and forward, figuring in a trio of game-winning goals this season.

Teska followed up a strong finish to her rookie season with an impressive showing throughout her sophomore campaign and earned all-region third-team distinction. One of the most athletic defenders in the MIAC, she had the ability to quickly activate into the attack. Teska scored the game winner in a 1-0 triumph over Saint Mary’s on Oct. 12.

Carleton tied with Loras College (Iowa) for most players on the All-North Region. Only six other NCAA Division III women’s soccer programs in the nation placed more players on an all-region squad.

These awards are just the latest highlights in a MIAC championship campaign:

  • Carleton was ranked as high as No. 11 in the NSCAA national poll, the highest national ranking in program history.
  • Needing a victory on the final day of the regular season, the Knights defeated rival St. Olaf, 3-0, to earn a share of their second consecutive conference regular-season crown and the third overall in program history.
  • Carleton made its fourth straight trip to the post-season.
  • Five Knights earned All-MIAC honors. This group included the four all-region selections plus goalkeeper Beth Ashinsky (Sr./Mount Kisco, N.Y./Horace Greeley), who led the MIAC in both goals against average and save percentage for the third straight season.
  • Carleton earned the NSCAA Team Academic Award for the 11th consecutive year.