Montclair, NJ (11/4/09) – The Montclair State men's soccer team earned a handful of honors on Wednesday as the New Jersey Athletic Conference released its 2009 All-Conference Team.
Seniors Joseph Cullen (Clementon, NJ / Highland) and William Griffin (Bloomfield, NJ / St. Peter's Prep) were named the Midfielder and Co-Defensive Player of the Year, respectively while Michael Cullen (Clementon, NJ / Highland) was chosen as the recipient of the David Logar Leadership Award. Head Coach Brian Sentowski was tabbed as the Coach of the Year for the second time as Montclair placed six total players on the squad, including four First-Team selections.
All three aforementioned players were named to the First Team along with junior back Mike Krol (Howell, NJ / Howell). Senior goalkeeper Teddy Ritter (Belford, NJ / Middletown North) was named Second Team with junior Coron Short (Dayton, NJ / South Brunswick) earning Honorable Mention accolades.
Joe Cullen was selected as the Pat Baldiserra Midfielder of the Year which was recently established by the New Jersey Athletic Conference Board of Athletic Administrators. The award is named in memory of former Rutgers University-Camden All-American Pat Baldiserra who was tragically killed in an automobile accident prior to the start of the 2007 season. A three-time NJAC all-conference selection, Cullen has produced four goals and four assists for 12 points in 17 matches played for the NJAC regular season champion Red Hawks.
Griffin, a first-time All-NJAC selection, was named the Co-Defensive Player of the Year along with William Paterson's Joe Strawman. Griffin spearheads a Red Hawk defense that currently leads the NJAC in fewest goals allowed (10), goals against average (0.53), and goals allowed per game (0.56).
Michael Cullen, who earned his first All-Conference honor, was the recipient of the conference’s David Logar Award, given annually to the player who best displays the attributes of leadership and courage. He leads Montclair State in goals (9), assists (7) and points (25) in addition to scoring three game-winning goals. Cullen ranks third in the NJAC in points and goals and is fourth in assists.
Krol has started all 18 contests for the Red Hawks and moves up to the First Team after garnering Second-Team honors in 2008.
Ritter earns his first All-Conference selection after stepping into the starting role this season. Ritter currently leads the conference in goals against average at 0.58 and is also third in save percentage and fifth in total saves. In addition Ritter has posted five shutouts, which is fifth-best in the NJAC.
Short has appeared in all but one contest this season and is currently fifth on the team with nine points as he has scored three goals while assisting on three others.
Sentowski was tapped as the NJAC Coach of the Year by his peers for a second time as he also earned the honors during the 2006 campaign. This season, he has guided the Red Hawks, currently ranked ninth by D3Soccer.com, to a 15-1-2 overall record and the NJAC regular season championship for a third time in four years via a 7-1-1 conference mark. In eight seasons at the helm of the MSU program, Sentowski has led the Red Hawks to an overall record of 127-27-14, one victory shy of the all-time win mark as Montclair State held by current assistant coach Rob Chesney (128 wins from 1991-2001).