Kostas Genidounias Named MPSF Player of the Year|
Nov. 25, 2014
USC senior Kostas Genidounias stands tall as the 2014 MPSF Player of the Year, having helped power up his Trojans for a 10th consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament, where USC is aiming to make a run at a potential seventh straight crown. Also with a spot on the All-MPSF First Team, Genidounias leads a pack of four Trojans on the MPSF honor roll this season. Fellow senior Rex Butler has scored his first career MPSF honor with a place on the All-MPSF Second Team, and two more first-timers weigh in on the All-MPSF Honorable Mention list in freshman McQuin Baron and sophomore Nick Bell.
Kostas Genidounias is the third Trojan in four years to be named MPSF Player of the Year, following the 2013 selection of Nikola Vavic and 2011 honoree Joel Dennerley. Genidounias is currently tied with Vavic with USC's all-time top scoring mark of 254 career goals. With a possible three more games left on the Trojans 2014 schedule, Genidounias has a great chance to take over as the new record-holder at Troy. He has already plugged in 75 goals in his senior season -- fifth most in USC history for a single season. Needless to say, Genidounias is a scoring machine. But he's also a crucial leader on this Trojan team. A captain, Genidounias has helped to lead his team into a 10th straight NCAA appearance for the Trojans. Now the No. 3 seed in the tournament, with a play-in game coming up on Saturday against Whittier, USC is looking at defending its historic run of six consecutive national championships and aiming to add a seventh to the run.
MPSF Player of the Year Genidounias now also stands out as a three-time selection to the All-MPSF First Team, having earned honorable mention as a freshman in 2011. This season, Genidounias' 75 goals scored have come in 26 different games. He's scored at least two goals in 24 games, topping out with a career-high seven goals against Cal earlier this year. Genidounias also was named to the MPSF All-Tournament Team after his five-goal effort at the tournament pulled him level at No. 1 all-time at USC last weekend. With 2.68 goals per game, he's the third leading scorer in the conference, with clear seniority in that group, having been a member of three NCAA Championship teams and setting up to aim for a potential career sweep as a Trojan. Genidounias' selection as MPSF Player of the Year is the eighth all-time for USC and the seventh in the past 10 years.
Now with his first set of All-MPSF honors, Second Team honoree Rex Butler is currently sporting the most productive season of his Trojan career. He's punched in 43 goals for the Trojan cause to date, standing as USC's second leading scorer behind the prolific Genidounias. That tally has pushed the senior well past the century mark, as he stands at No. 27 all-time in career scoring with 112 goals as he moves into another NCAA Tournament for a chance to also round out his Trojan career with a full set of national championship rings.
Weighing in on the All-MPSF Honorable Mention list are two young Trojans. Both members of the U.S National Team, both also were MPSF Player of the Week picks this season, and both have been instrumental in driving the Trojans toward defense of their string of national titles. Sophomore Nick Bell bounced back from injury and came up big for the Trojans in their run to the SoCal Tournament championship, plugging in 12 goals at the tourney to help build what is now a season tally of 22 goals scored in 10 different games. Alongside Bell on the Honorable Mention list is freshman goalie McQuin Baron, another national teamer who has laid claim to a whopping 259 saves in his 25 appearances in the cage so far. That mark is the third most by a USC goalie in a single season, and puts him 20 saves away from setting a new record at Troy. He's averaging 11.02 saves per game and just 6.85 goals again per game in his debut season with the Trojans.