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College notes: Carthage's Bitta leads NSCAA All-Wisconsin honor team

02/11/2017, 8:15pm CST
By ERIC ANDERSON
National Soccer Coaches Association of America logo

Austin Bitta had a historic season for the Carthage men's soccer team last fall.

The senior midfielder scored 14 goals and added 13 assists, factoring into nearly half of the Red Men's goals on the season as Carthage posted a perfect season in College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin play and won the conference tournament.

Bitta also became the first All-American in program history, making the the third team of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America honor squad, and was the first Carthage player named the NSCAA All-Wisconsin Player of the Year.

The Illinois native's assist total was the second-best total in a season in program history, while his goal output was tied for fourth. Bitta also tied for seventh nationally in NCAA Division III play in assists.

His teammate and fellow Illinois native, Giles Phillips, was named the state Defensive Player of the Year. The sophomore had four goals and three assists and anchored a Carthage backline that recorded five clean sheets on the season.

Milwaukee School of Engineering junior midfielder Braden Andryk (Milwaukee Marquette) was named to the All-Wisconsin first team for the third consecutive season and was tabbed the state Offensive Player of the Year. He tied for fourth in Division III with 22 goals (six game-winners) and added 10 assists for the Raiders.

The All-Wisconsin Newcomer of the Year was St. Norbert midfielder-forward Ben Prange (Wauwatosa East), who claimed the same award from the Midwest Conference. Prange scored 12 goals, tying teammate and fellow first-team, All-Wisconsin selection Tyler Kassube (Kimberly) to top the conference scoring chart.

Prange was the lone freshman named to the 17-player first team, which also included Maranatha Baptist senior forward Wira Wama – the Papua New Guinea international was the NSCAA National Christian College Athletic Association Division II Player of the Year last fall.

Beloit College senior forward Isaiah Turner-Wyatt and Silver Lake junior Luka Jovicic were selected as the Co-Sportsmen of the Year, while Carthage's Steve Domin and St. Norbert's Derek Rhodes shared the Coach of the Year honor – both teams earned NCAA Division III tournament berths.

FIRST TEAM

Pos. Player Year School High school
GK Chris Lucatorto Jr. UW-Whitewater
D Gavin Falotico So. Concordia
D Giles Phillips So. Carthage
D William Pretto Sr. UW-Platteville Madison West
D-M Justin Clayton Sr. Concordia
D-M Alex Schumacher Jr. St. Norbert Green Bay Preble
M Austin Bitta Sr. Carthage
M Dagoberto Diaz So. Concordia
M Tyler Kassube Sr. St. Norbert Kimberly
M Jordan Kayser Sr. UW-Whitewater Elkhorn
M Gio Rodriguez Sr. UW-Superior
M-F Jon Bucklew Jr. UW-Superior Somerset
F Braden Andryk Jr. Milwaukee School of Engineering Milwaukee Marquette
F Dylan Hottsmith Jr. UW-Whitewater
F Ben Prange Fr. St. Norbert Wauwatosa East
F Logan Rinderknecht So. UW-Platteville
F Wira Wama Sr. Maranatha Baptist

Player of the Year: Austin Bitta, Carthage.
Offensive Player of the Year: Braden Andryk, Milwaukee School of Engineering.
Defensive Player of the Year: Giles Phillips, Carthage.
Newcomer of the Year: Ben Prange, St. Norbert.
Co-Sportsmen of the Year: Isaiah Turner-Wyatt, Beloit College, and Luka Jovicic, Silver Lake.
Co-Coaches of the Year: Steve Domin, Carthage, and Derek Rhodes, St. Norbert.

SECOND TEAM

Pos. Player Year School High school
GK Brayan Arce-Justiniano So. Carthage
GK Josh Koleske Fr. St. Norbert Appleton North
D Tommy Bitter So. UW-Platteville
D Ben Luitjens Sr. Carroll Little Chute
D Hugo Roos So. UW-Superior
D Teon Fountain Fr. Wisconsin Lutheran Madison Memorial
D Kevin Winter Sr. UW-Whitewater Kettle Moraine
D-M Adrian Herrera Fr. Carthage
M Michael Salm Sr. UW-Whitewater Grafton
M Henry Simon Jr. Edgewood College Kimberly
M-F Garrett Lee So. Edgewood College Sussex Hamilton
F Alonso Fragoso Jr. Marian
F Taylor Reifert So. Lawrence
F Johnny Rimkus Jr. Carthage Kenosha Bradford

HONORABLE MENTION

Pos. Player Year School High school
GK Erek Lehnen Fr. Wisconsin Lutheran
GK Ben Wilhelm Sr. UW-Superior
D Alex Bach Sr. UW-Platteville Madison West
D Dominic Pasquesi Sr. Lawrence
D Joey Spera Jr. St. Norbert
D-M Isaiah Turner-Wyatt Sr. Beloit College
M Renan Asato Sr. Lakeland
M Gregory Borsari Jr. Milwaukee School of Engineering Milwaukee Pius
M Kevin Mahoney So. Carthage
M Sean Tabbert Jr. Milwaukee School of Engineering Milwaukee Pius
M Ryan Wisdom Sr. UW-Superior Hayward
F Collin Dibb Jr. Concordia Hartland Arrowhead
F Sam Lamers Sr. St. Norbert Kimberly
F Cesar Pineda Fr. Silver Lake
F Caden Pruitt Sr. Carroll
  • Tim Schmiechen, the winningest coach in Midwest Conference men's soccer history, stepped down in December after 26 seasons. Schmiechen will now focus his full energy to his position as the school's athletic director, a post he assumed in 2014 after eight years as the associate director. Schmiechen compiled a 217-200-31 overall record and a 137-98-15 mark in MWC matches with the Buccaneers, who qualified for the conference tournament in 15 of his 26 years. He was named MWC Coach of the Year five times and won the league title in 2006. Duncan Gillis (Beloit College), a 2014 graduate who served as Schmiechen's assistant for the past three seasons, was promoted to replace his former coach. Gillis was a forward and captain for the Buccaneers, recording three goals and an assist from 2010 to '13.
  • Will Greer (Marian), who was the interim Lawrence men's coach for most of the 2016 season, was named Vikings coach. Greer was an assistant in the program from 2007 to '12, and was most recently the youth coaching director at Middleton's Rush Wisconsin SC and a coach for the Wisconsin Youth Soccer Association's Olympic Development Program. Lawrence was 6-10-1 overall last season, including a 5-7-1 mark under Greer, and finished eighth in the nine-team MWC.
  • UW-Superior is seeking a new women's coach after Morgan MacLean stepped down after three seasons. The Yellowjackets went 1-16-0 overall and 1-7-0 in their second season in the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference last fall, and had a 6-42-2 overall record under MacLean.
  • Joshua Kammeraad is the new UW-Rock County coach, succeeding his former coach, Grant McNall. Kammeraad, who earned honorable mention All-Wisconsin Collegiate Conference honors and was the Rattlers' team MVP and captain in 2002, served as an assistant in the program in 2014. McNall stepped down last fall after 14 seasons at the helm, but is continuing in his role as the school's athletic director.

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