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December 22. 2013 12:01AM

NH College Notebook: SNHU's Omanga named Div. II soccer player of the year


SNHU's Pierre Omanga, the National Soccer Coaches Association Division II Player of the Year. 

AFTER LEADING the Southern New Hampshire University men's soccer team to the 2013 NCAA Division II national championship, senior Pierre Omanga was named by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America as its Division II National Player of the Year.

Omanga, of Paris, France, will receive his award at the NSCAA All-America luncheon in Philadelphia on Saturday, Jan. 18.

"Pierre did an unbelievable job in a short amount of time adjusting to our system and our program. He deserves all the credit he is getting at this point," said Southern New Hampshire head coach Marc Hubbard, who on Tuesday was named the NSCAA Division II Coach of the Year.

In his lone season with the Penmen, Omanga was a consensus First Team All-American, earning the honor from both Daktronics and the NSCAA. he finished the season with 21 goals and three assists for 45 points as the Penmen went 22-1-1, ending the season on a 23-game unbeaten streak and capturing the program's second national championship with a 2-1 win over Carson-Newman University on Dec. 7. He finished third nationally in total goals and sixth in total points as he led an attack that ranked fourth nationally in total goals (61) and 11th in goals per game (2.54).

The Northeast-10 Player of the Year and a unanimous First Team All-Conference selection tallied a goal and an assist in the season's first five games. His breakthrough game came on Sept. 25 against St. Anselm, as he finished with SNHU's first hat trick since 2010 and tallied three goals and an assist in a 5-1 win. From there, Omanga scored in 13 of the season's final 19 games, posting six multi-goal games and recording 10 game-winning goals on the season, helping the Penmen go 13-0-0 in Northeast-10 regular season play, the first time that has happened in league history, and capturing SNHU's third NE-10 regular season title.

Omanga was named the Most Outstanding Offensive Player of the NCAA Championship after scoring twice in the tournament, including the eventual game-winning goal on a penalty kick with 4:23 remaining in the national title game.

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After leading Southern New Hampshire University to the 2013 NCAA Division II national championship, Penmen head men's soccer coach Marc Hubbard has been named the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Field Turf Division II Coach of the Year.

Hubbard, along with all of the other NSCAA/Field Turf Coach of the Year honorees, will be honored on Friday, Jan. 17, at the annual NSCAA Awards Banquet in Philadelphia, held in conjunction with the NSCAA Convention.

A three-time Northeast-10 Conference Coach of the Year in his first six seasons, Hubbard guided the Penmen to a 22-1-1 record and the NCAA Division II national championship in 2013. After dropping the season opener, Southern New Hampshire was unbeaten in 23 straight games to close out the season en route to the title, culminating with a 2-1 win over Carson-Newman University in the championship game to bring SNHU its second national championship. The win in the championship game was the 100th of Hubbard's career, as he has a career 100-19-14 (.805) record.

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Four new members will be inducted into the Southern New Hampshire University Athletics Hall of Fame on Jan. 25, 2014. Preston Burpo (soccer), Sam Carey (basketball), Ed Ithier (basketball) and David McGuire (soccer) will join 101 other individuals and two teams as members of the SNHU Athletic Hall of Fame.

Burpo, a native of Mission Viejo, Calif., was a four-year goalkeeper for the men's soccer team from 1991-94. In 60 career appearances, he recorded a 1.03 goals-against average and posted 17 shutouts, tied for eighth in program history. After SNHU, Burpo went on to a long professional career, first with the Seattle Sounders of the USL First Division and then with three different Major League Soccer clubs, making a total of 57 MLS appearances in five seasons before ending his career with the New England Revolution in 2010. He currently serves as the goalkeeping coach for D.C. United.

Carey, a native of Manchester and graduate of Manchester High School Central, was a four-year starter for the men's basketball team from 2004-08, appearing in 113 games over his four seasons with 109 starts. A Northeast-10 Second Team All-Conference selection as a senior, he finished with 1,506 career points and 678 career rebounds and currently ranks 16th in career scoring. Carey led the team in scoring and rebounding as a junior and senior. After 2008, he played professionally with the Manchester Millrats as well as in Uruguay, Germany and Canada before tragically losing his life in an automobile accident in November 2011.

Ithier, a Bronx, N.Y., product, was a four-year member of the men's basketball program from 1983-87. He played in all 121 games over his four seasons and finished with 1,067 points and 629 assists, placing him fifth in program history in career assists. He helped lead the Penmen to an 86-35 (.711) record over his career, including two NCAA tournament appearances and a regional championship as a senior. He now resides in Hooksett.

McGuire was a three-year member of the men's soccer program from 2004-06. Despite being limited to just 44 games (41 starts) in his career, the Glasgow, Scotland native totaled 22 goals and 16 assists for 60 points. McGuire led the team in scoring in his first two seasons and finished third as a senior. A two-time NSCAA All-American, McGuire was a First Team selection in 2005 and named to the Third Team in 2006.

Tickets for the 2014 SNHU Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony and dinner are $75 or $525 for a table of eight. For more information contact Stephanie Stehl in the Department of Athletics and Recreation at 645-9748 or s.stehl@snhu.edu.

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UMass Lowell grabbed its first America East weekly award as Nicole Hayner was named Rookie of the Week:

Hayner, a freshman from Bedford, N.H., scored a career-high 18 points in UMass Lowell's only game of the week at Rhode Island. She went 5-for-12 from beyond the arc, and added two rebounds and one steal.


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