Nov. 8, 2012
2012 All-Big Ten Teams
EVANSTON, Ill. - Northwestern took home a number of Big Ten honors tonight as the conference released its player of the year awards and All-Big Ten men's soccer teams on Thursday. Senior midfielder Chris Ritter is the 2012 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, forward Joey Calistri was the unanimous choice as 2012 Big Ten Freshman of the Year and five Wildcats from this year's Big Ten championship squad were named to the All-Big Ten teams for 2012.
Northwestern had a school-record of four players receive First Team All-Big Ten recognition and they include Ritter, who was a unanimous choice, Calistri, sophomore defender Nikko Boxall and sophomore goalkeeper Tyler Miller. NU senior defender Jarrett Baughman made the second team, putting the Wildcats at five All-Big Ten honorees for 2012, which matches a school record. Additionally, Calistri and freshman midfielder Cole Missimo made the 2012 Big Ten All-Freshman Team.
A mainstay in the midfield for the Wildcats during the 2012 season, Ritter started all 18 regular-season matches and contributed on both offense and defense as a senior captain on this year's Big Ten championship squad. The Winnetka, Ill., native helped the Wildcats play lockdown defense during the 2012 Big Ten regular season as the team only allowed three goals in conference play and posted a 0.45 goals-against average. On the other side of the ball, Ritter set career-highs in 2012, scoring five goals and adding five assists to finish the regular-season with 15 points. Ritter is now a two-time All-Big Ten honoree after making the second team in 2011.
Calistri had a fantastic freshman season for the Wildcats to earn the title of Freshman of the Year and First Team All-Big Ten. The Deerfield, Ill., native led Northwestern with seven goals during the regular season and currently has eight goals after scoring Wednesday night in NU's first match of the 2012 Big Ten Tournament.
One of his biggest goals of the season came in Northwestern's 2012 Big Ten finale on the road at No. 22 Indiana. Trailing 1-0 and needing a tie to stay alive in the hunt for the Big Ten title, Calistri scored the equalizer in the 52nd minute to give the Wildcats their 11th point in the conference standings, which helped them share the 2012 crown. The Freshman of the Year was second in the conference in goals and was a unanimous selection on the All-Freshman Team.
Northwestern had one of the best defenses in the Big Ten in 2012, allowing a conference-low three goals and posting a 0.45 goals-against average in the six regular-season games. Three key parts of the defense, goalkeeper Tyler Miller along with center backs Nikko Boxall and Jarrett Baughman, were recognized with spots on the All-Big Ten teams.
After a spectacular freshman season in 2011, Miller continued his dominance in net for Northwestern in 2012 and received First Team All-Big Ten honors for the second straight season. The Woodbury, N.J., native let just three goals slip through during the Big Ten season as he posted three shutouts and a 0.45 goals-against average in the six regular-season conference games. The two-time first team honoree currently has 17 career shutouts, including eight in 2012, to rank second in Northwestern history.
Another key part of the Northwestern defense, Boxall, finds himself on an All-Big Ten team for the second time in as many years. The Auckland, N.Z., native received second-team honors in 2011 and now is a first-team honoree.
Baughman receives his first All-Big Ten award in his senior season. The Bloomington, Ind., native has played every single minute for the Wildcat defense this year, and has started every match for the NU backline the last two seasons (40 starts). The senior captain also was recognized as Northwestern's Sportsmanship Award Honoree for 2012.
Missimo joins Calistri on this year's Big Ten All-Freshman Team. The Dallas, Texas native has played all 19 matches this year, starting six in the midfield and is second behind Calistri in minutes played for NU freshmen this year.
Head coach Tim Lenahan and the Wildcats continue their run in the 2012 Big Ten Tournament at Lakeside Field. Semifinal matches take place Friday with the first game at noon, featuring No. 1 seed Penn State vs. No. 5 seed Michigan State and second-seeded Northwestern meets No. 3 Michigan at 2:30 p.m. Updates throughout the tournament can be found at Tournament Central.
Northwestern All-Big Ten Honorees
Defensive Player of the Year - Chris Ritter
Freshman of the Year - Joey Calistri*
First Team All-Big Ten - Joey Calistri (forward)
First Team All-Big Ten - Chris Ritter* (midfield)
First Team All-Big Ten - Nikko Boxall (defense)
First Team All-Big Ten - Tyler Miller (goalkeeper)
Second Team All-Big Ten - Jarrett Baughman (defense)
All-Freshman Team - Joey Calistri*
All-Freshman Team - Cole Missimo
Sportsmanship Award - Jarrett Baughman
* indicates unanimous selection
A complete list of the Big Ten award recipients can be found in the PDF at the top of the page.
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