Three First-Team Selections Among Six Billikens on A-10 Postseason Lists
ST. LOUIS – Six Saint Louis University women’s soccer student-athletes earned Atlantic 10 Conference postseason honors as announced today by the league office.
Senior defender Kacey Bright was selected Defensive Player of the Year and was one of three Billikens voted to the All-Conference first team by A-10 head coaches. Senior forward Danielle Tolmais and junior goalkeeper Mary Niehaus joined Bright on the A-10’s top squad.
Senior midfielder Shaney Sakamoto and sophomore midfielder Maddie Pokorny garnered second-team All-Conference accolades, while freshman midfielder Courtney Reimer collected All-Rookie plaudits.
Bright and Niehaus were chosen to the All-Academic team by A-10 women’s soccer sports information representatives.
Saint Louis equaled program records with five student-athletes on the All-Conference first and second teams combined and two tabbed for All-Academic honors. The Billikens' three first-team choices tied for the second most in program history.
The six All-Conference honorees are part of a Saint Louis team that takes a 14-3-2 record into the A-10 Championship, which begins Thursday, Nov. 3, at Rhode Island. The Billikens, who finished second in the A-10 regular-season standings with a 7-1-2 mark, take on Dayton at 10 a.m. (CT).
Bright leads Saint Louis field players with 1,716 minutes (90.3 minutes per game), and she was on the field every minute in 16 of 19 regular-season games. She guides a defensive effort that has lifted the Billikens to the top of the A-10 in shutouts (nine, including five vs. conference opponents) as well as 29th nationally and second in the league in goals against average (0.71). Bright and her teammates allow just 8.3 total shots, 3.9 shots on goal and 3.7 corner kicks per game.
Bright was tabbed A-10 Defensive Player of the Week Oct. 10 and earned a spot on the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Week Oct. 19. An exercise science major with a 3.878 grade point average, she was selected to the Academic All-District 6 team by the College Sports Information Directors of America.
Tolmais leads the Billikens in goals (10), points (23), game-winning goals (four) and shots on goal (25). She is the first Billiken since 2006 to register 10 goals and at least 20 points, and she is in position to lead SLU in points for a second consecutive season.
Tolmais is tied for 38th in the nation and tied for second in the A-10 in game-winning goals. She ranks sixth in the conference in points per game (1.21) and is tied for sixth in goals per game (0.53). Tolmais scored both goals in a 2-1 win over Rhode Island, tallied twice vs. Fort Wayne and recorded the game-winning assist vs. VCU.
Niehaus, who has played every minute in goal this season, earned A-10 Defensive Player of the Week honors three times. She is tied for 14th nationally and tied for first in the A-10 in shutouts (nine); 33rd nationally and second in the league in goals against average (0.71); and 17th in the nation in minutes (1783:44).
Niehaus’ 14 victories this year tie the SLU single-season record set by Meghann Burke (1999) and equaled by Amanda Martin (2004). In conference games only, she led the A-10 in goals against average (0.56), tied for first in shutouts (five) and ranked second in save percentage (.864). Niehaus is a neuroscience major with a 3.511 grade point average.
A starter in all 19 games, Sakamoto is tied for the Saint Louis lead and tied for eighth in the A-10 with five assists. She also ranks fourth on the team in shots (26) and fifth in points (nine) and shots on goal (11). One of Sakamoto’s two goals was the game-winner vs. Illinois, and she added two game-winning assists.
Pokorny also has started every game and has tallied two goals and two assists. She leads the Billikens in shots (47), ranks second in shots on goal (19) and is fifth among SLU field players in minutes (1,266). Pokorny notched the game-winning goal vs. SIUE, and her goal in the 82nd minute vs. VCU tied the game before the Bills went on to win in overtime. She also recorded the game-winning assist vs. Fordham.
Reimer played in 16 regular-season games and earned nine starting nods. She averaged 56 minutes and registered one assist, 11 shots and three shots on goal.