More Honors

Members of the Mountaineer men's soccer team continue to collect honors for thier outstanding season.

Nick Noble and Jarrod Smith were named to the CollegeSoccerNews.com All-America team, while head coach Marlon LeBlanc was named the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/adidas Division I Northeast regional coach of the year. Smith was named to the publication's first team, while Noble earned a spot on the second team.

Smith, a native of Havelock North, New Zealand, scored 14 goals in 15 matches this season to go along with four assists. The senior forward set the BIG EAST single season conference goals record in 2006 with 12 and the single season conference point record with 28. Smith netted 32 goals in four seasons for WVU, tied for fifth all-time in school history. He is tied for third in school history in career matches played with 74.

Noble wrapped up one of the greatest careers in WVU soccer history in 2006. The Damascus, Md., native ranked nationally throughout the season in goals against average (.63) and save percentage (.864). Noble holds career marks at WVU in matches played (80), goals against average (.88), shutouts (37) and minutes played (7,179), while ranking third in career saves (292).

The duo became the first to earn All-America status for WVU since goalkeeper Jon Capon did so in 1981 when the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) named Noble to their first team and Smith to the second on Dec. 1. They are the first teammates to do so for West Virginia in the same year since defender Pat Sullivan and forward Walt Nistorenko in 1968. The other two Mountaineers to ever be named All-American's were midfielder Ron McEachon in 1967 and defender Joe Okhakhu.

With the coaching award, LeBlanc is now one of eight finalists for the NSCAA national coach of the year that is awarded later this month.

After taking over the Mountaineer soccer program on the first day of the preseason, LeBlanc guided the team to its most successful season in school history. West Virginia posted a 15-3-3 overall record and 9-0-1 conference clip that included a BIG EAST regular season championship and a runner-up finish in the conference tournament. For his efforts he was named the BIG EAST coach of the year on Nov. 2.

WVU defeated four ranked opponents during the 2006 season and ranked as high as third nationally. In all, LeBlanc's Mountaineers spent eight weeks ranked in the top 10 and five in the top 5.

Under the tutelage of the East Windsor, N.J., native, seniors Jarrod Smith and Nick Noble earned selections on both the NSCAA and CollegeSoccerNews.com All-America teams marking the first players to do so for West Virginia since 1981.


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