Louisiana Tech, SLU lead All-Louisiana soccer team

Louisiana Tech junior forward Emily Brennan and Southeastern Louisiana senior goalkeeper Lacey Bockhaus shared Player of the Year honors to highlight the 2012 Louisiana Sports Writers Association All-Louisiana Collegiate Women’s Soccer Teams, which were announced by the LSWA on Saturday.

Led by Brennan and Bockhaus, Louisiana Tech and Southeastern each placed a three players on the All-Louisiana first team. LSU placed a pair of players on the first team, which was rounded out by players from Louisiana-Monroe, Nicholls State and LSU-Shreveport.

LSU placed two players on the first team in freshman midfielder/defender Jade Kovacevic and sophomore midfielder Alex Arlitt. Kovacevic dished out all six of her assists in Southeastern Conference play, while Arlitt tied for the team lead with four goals.

Brennan was one of two Louisiana Tech individual award winners, as coach Kevin Sherry was named the state’s Coach of the Year.

Bockhaus was joined on the first team by teammate Kayla Vera, who was selected the Freshman of the Year. Sophomore defender Jackie Strug closed out the individual award winners as the Newcomer of the Year.

Brennan, a native of Plano, Texas, shared top honors with Bockhaus after leading the 12-5-4 Techsters in goals with seven. A second-team All-Western Athletic Conference selection, Brennan scored the game-tying goal in Louisiana Tech’s 1-1 tie with No. 19 Denver.

While Brennan was the state’s standout offensive player, Bockhaus solidified herself as one of the best goalkeepers in Southland Conference history. A second team All-Central Region selection, the San Leandro, Calif., native posted a 0.99 goals against average and 10 shutouts on the season, finishing her career as the league’s career record holder with 40 shutouts.

Vera, a Vancouver, Wash. native, was an immediate impact player for the Lady Lions in her debut season. She led Southeastern with six assists to go with six goals on the way to earning honorable mention All-Southland accolades.

Strug was an anchor for the Northwestern State defense after coming to Natchitoches following her freshman season at Texas Tech. The Plano, Texas, native contributed three goals from the back line.

Sherry was honored as the state’s top coach after leading his young team to a 12-5-4 record and an 11-match unbeaten streak. Sherry was charged with replacing 17 players from last season’s team and replaced the group with 16 freshmen and a sophomore transfer. The team responded with a fourth-place finish in the WAC, setting school records by allowing 15 goals and recording 12 shutouts along the way.

Freshman forwards Karlea Fehr of Louisiana-Monroe and Spencer Valdespino of Nicholls State were their schools’ lone representatives on the first team after each scoring five goals and registering five assists.

LSU-Shreveport senior forward Brooke Martin rounded out the first team, after finishing her career as the Lady Pilots’ all-time leading scorer with 45 goals.