With the semester coming to a wrap and finals upon us, let’s recap the standout performers of the Fall sports at CSUN.
Super Senior- Sam Kaul, Women’s Volleyball, Sr.
Award given to the most underrated senior
Kaul didn’t lead her team kills, but anyone who watched a women’s volleyball game saw her contributions to the team on both the offensive and defensive side. She finishes her career atop program history in hitting and blocking percentage. Kaul received Honorable Mention recognition from the Big West All Conference Team.
Runner Up: Leandra Walker, Women’s Soccer, Sr.
Most likely to play pro- Sagi Lev Ari, Men’s Soccer, Sr.
Award given to player most likely to have a professional career
One thing you could count on from the Men’s Soccer team was Lev-Ari scoring as he racked up 11 goals, five game winners. He has captured headlines for CSUN over the past four years, and most of us knew it was only a matter of time until he went pro. The two time All-American was also a finalist for the MAC trophy award in 2013, the most prestigious honor in college soccer.
Runner Up: Stephen Maxwell, Men’s Basketball, Sr.
Most likely to have a statue- Casey Hinger, Women’s Volleyball, Sr.
Award given to player with the grandest legacy
Listing her entire resume would take too long. Head coach Jeff Stork endorsed her as one of the greatest players in program history and she has proved it. She won Freshmen of the Year in 2011 and has made the all conference team each of her four seasons. Hinger helped the Matadors reach their first NCAA tournament and Big West title in 2013. Whatever the senior middle blocker does next, CSUN should look to immortalize Hinger someday. With many other Matadors worthy, Hinger gets the nod because she has dominated since she came to CSUN in 2011.
Runner Up: Ashlee Guay, Women’s Basketball, Sr.
Stat Stuffer- Ashlee Guay, Women’s Basketball, Sr.
Award given to player who contributes all over the stat sheet
There are many other Matadors who stuff the stat sheet, but Guay gets the nod because she is the engine for the best team on campus. Whether it is assists, steals, or points Guay does it all. Guay too could easily be one of the best players in program history. She entered the season with program leading career totals with 386 assists and 237 steals, and is only adding to that. Last year’s Big West Conference Player of the Year currently averages 14.6 points per game and just over three assists with three rebounds. Teammate Janae Sharpe also makes a case, but Guay gets the edge for her career contributions, and being the leading scorer for the Matadors doesn’t hurt.
Runner-up: Janae Sharpe, Women’s Basketball, Sr.
Biggest Newcomer- Jovannie McCaskill, Women’s Soccer, Sophomore
Award given to the breakout player
When Cynthia Tafoya went down with an injury, McCaskill seized the opportunity. She kept the job for the rest of the season and earned herself conference awards with an all conference honorable mention conference and defensive player of the week. She had five shut-outs and CSUN should expect even more from her next season.
Runner-up: Elizabeth Nelson, Cross Country, Jr.
Most Consistent- Stephan Hicks, Men’s Basketball, Sr.
Award given to player you can count on day in and day out
Last season, Josh Greene captured headlines for the men’s basketball team, and this season the hype has been around teammate Stephen Maxwell. The truth is, Hicks has been the most consistent player for the Matadors over the past seasons. He is among the conference and program leaders in career points. Hicks has continued that averaging almost 18 points a game this season. If it is one thing you can count on from the men’s basketball team it is Hicks scoring.
Runner-up: Camille Mahlknecht, Women’s Basketball, Sr.
Coach of the Year- Keith West
Award given to the most outstanding coach
After stumbling through non-conference play at 3-8-1, it seemed like CSUN was headed for another post season miss like 2013. However, they turned it around in the Big West going 4-3-1 and making the Big West tournament including four straight wins. They lost a tough game 1-0 to Cal State Fullerton in the tournament, but West should be applauded for the midseason turnaround.
Runner-up: This is West’s award considering he is the only leader who took his team to the postseason.
Most to prove in 2015- Entire Men’s Basketball bench
Award given to the player with most to prove in the New Year
In case you have missed any of the headlines, many of the Matador’s highly recruited class has yet to make an appearance. Featuring three top recruits, this class was suppossed to help Head Coach Reggie Theus keep starters fresh as they play an uptempo offense. It has yet to happen, and hopefully the Matadors can get the off-court issue resolved so these guys can play in the new year.
Runner-up: Women’s Sand Volleyball Team
Best Moment- WV defeating Hawaii in opener
Award given for the best win of the fall season
Beating a nationally ranked team like Hawaii is good enough. Doing it on your home opener and premiere of The Blacktop is even better. Sweeping the Big West rival in a convincing fashion makes this the best win of the fall season. Making it the first win against Hawai’i in CSUN Volleyball History adds to the greatness of the win. The only thing that would have made this win better is fans storming the Blacktop at the conclusion.
Runner-up: Women’s Soccer makes Big West Tournament
Biggest Flop: Men’s Soccer loss to CSUF
Award given to the most underwhelming team
Men’s Soccer could have easily had the best win by defeating No. 3 ranked UC Irvine 3-0 on the road. They could have won it again by beating the Anteaters again only two games later. However, the team that had NCAA tournament hopes followed the huge second win against Irvine with an even bigger loss in the last game. They missed the tournament with a 1-1 overtime draw to Fullerton, ending their hopes of even making the Big West Conference Tournament. To make matters worse, Lev-Ari missed a crucial penalty shot to win the last game.
Runner-up: Women’s Volleyball loss to UC Irvine