January 15, 2008 — Texas A&M University senior Ashlee Pistorius has been chosen as the nation’s top collegiate female soccer player. The honor was based on the results of national balloting among 1,000 NCAA member schools as part of the Collegiate Women Sports Awards program, now in its 32nd year.
Pistorius’ victory will earn her the 2008 Honda Sports Award, given annually to the top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports, along with automatic nomination for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year. She was voted over three other nominees: Lauren Cheney, a sophomore at UCLA; Kristin Olsen, a sophomore at the University of Southern California; and Mami Yamaguchi, a junior at Florida State University. The candidates were selected by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.
Noted Pistorius: “I was really excited to find out that I was nominated with the other three girls who are great athletes. Then to find out that I was the one chosen as the winner was amazing. I think it’s really more of a compliment to the whole team and to Texas A&M than to me as an individual and it really shows what kind of team we are. Our coaching staff expected our best every day during practice, which translated into our best coming out during the games.”
Ever since joining the Aggies starting lineup four games into her freshman season, Pistorius has led her team in goals scored. The 5’10” forward was the 2007 Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year, and led the nation in total goals scored (25). She was a NSCAA second-team All-American in 2006, and third-team All American this season. Among her many achievements are two record-setting Texas A&M “firsts,” including a career-high 12 shots and four goals in a single game, starting 92-consecutive games and a career record of 81 goals and 194 points. She is a four-time member of the Big 12 All-Tournament Team, of which she was named Tournament Offensive MVP in 2005. Additionally, Pistorius scored 25 goals and contributed 9 assists in 2007. Soccer Buzz magazine selected her for its 2007 Preseason All-America squad. Pistorius is a member of the Academic All-Big 12 second team, majoring in sport management.
Added Pistorius: “I’m really honored to be among such great company as the athletes who have won this award before me – there are so many talented national players whom I hadn’t realized had won the award.”
Previously announced Honda Sports Award recipients include Texas Tech’s Sally Kipyego for cross-country, and University of North Carolina’s Rachel Dawson for field hockey. Honda Sports Award winners in basketball, golf, gymnastics, lacrosse, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, volleyball, and track & field will be announced in the coming months. The Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year will be determined by separate balloting involving all NCAA-member institutions and the winner will receive the Honda-Broderick Cup at Columbia University in New York in late June 2008.