CORTLAND — The State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) announced its annual men’s soccer awards Tuesday morning, naming Plattsburgh State’s Matt Hamilton the SUNYAC Player of the Year while Nick Economou received Rookie of the Year honors. The awards are voted on annually by the conference coaches.
The Cardinal duo was joined by four other members of the Plattsburgh State men’s soccer team on the 2013 SUNYAC All-Conference Team. Tom Greene, Nick Parrella and Fabian Chaparro received spots on the second team while Alexis Archilla rounded out the Plattsburgh contingent on the third team.
Hamilton becomes the sixth Cardinal men’s soccer player to receive the league’s highest honor as the Huntley Parker Player of the Year and the first since Bart Misiak in 2009. The senior midfielder out of Keeseville was also the lone Plattsburgh State representative on the All-SUNYAC First Team, earning all-conference honors for the second straight season. In his second season as team captain, Hamilton was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2013 SUNYAC Tournament after helping lead the Cardinals to their eighth conference title over the weekend. He has appeared in all 21 games, logging more minutes than all but one of his teammates, leads the league with five game-winning goals and is tied for fourth in conference scoring with 18 points.
In addition to Rookie of the Year honors, Economou earned a spot on the All-SUNYAC Second Team after making an immediate impact on the Plattsburgh State defense. A center back from Vestal, N.Y., Economou helped stabilize a young defense that limited its opponents to 0.90 goals per game. He added two goals this season, with his first goal coming in his collegiate debut against Rutgers-Newark. He has appeared in 20 of 21 games and accumulated more minutes played than any other Cardinals.
Greene gets the first all-conference nod of his career after accumulating a career-high 15 points with nine of those points coming in conference play. A Schenectady native, he enjoyed a midseason stretch of six straight games with at least a point. Greene, who has appeared in all 21 games, has been named to the SUNYAC All-Tournament Team twice.
Parrella becomes a two-time All-SUNYAC player with his latest award. Hailing from Miller Place, N.Y., Parrella tallied three goals and five assists for 11 points and ranks fourth in team scoring. The junior forward appeared in all 21 games, starting in 19 of them.
In his second season with the Cardinals, Chaparro picks up Second Team All-SUNYAC honors with three goals and two assists. The Mamaroneck, N.Y. product has started all 21 games thus far and was named to the SUNYAC All-Tournament Team this past weekend, but what he may be most remembered for this season is his game-winning goal against Buffalo State on Oct. 18. The overtime bicycle kick goal landed Plattsburgh State at No. 3 on SportsCenter’s Top Plays and helped Chaparro earn Player of the Week honors.
Archilla was one of only four rookies to earn all-conference accolades with a spot on the third team. A freshman from Warwick, N.Y., Archilla has led the Cardinals’ offense this season with a team-high 10 goals and 23 points. He has been named SUNYAC Offensive Player of the Week on two occasions and is tied for second in the league in goals and points.
The Cardinals begin their journey in the NCAA Tournament on Saturday against Wheaton College at 1:30 p.m. in a first round matchup. St. Lawrence, which will serve as the host institution, will play Thomas at 11 a.m. in the other first round matchup. The winners will play on Sunday at 1:30 p.m.