Dineen Earns Second Team All-NWC Recognition

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Junior midfielder Casey Dineen (Portland, OR/Jesuit HS), who was Willamette University's top creative midfielder this season, has been chosen Second Team All-Northwest Conference in men's soccer, as selected by the NWC head coaches. Willamette freshman forward Erik Kaufman (Portland, OR/Grant HS) received Honorable Mention All-NWC honors.

Overall, a total of 43 players were named All-Northwest Conference. Twelve players were selected for the First Team, with 12 more on the Second Team and 19 on the Honorable Mention list.

Whitworth University head coach Sean Bushey was named NWC Coach of the Year. Senior goalkeeper Brett Axelrod of Whitman College earned NWC Defensive Player of the Year honors, while senior forward Caleb Barnhill of Whitworth was chosen NWC Offensive Player of the Year.

Dineen played in 17 games with 17 starts and led the Bearcats with four assists. He was the primary link between Willamette's defense and team's attacking players. He was able to pass the ball forward or take the ball through the defense. He led the team with 39 total shots during the season.

"Casey has shown he is one of the best ball winners in our conference," Head Coach Nelson Larson said. "He has played very well this season and I know he will be looking to be on the First Team next year."

Kaufman was WU's top scorer with six goals and 12 total points. He scored a goal in four consecutive games between Aug. 30 and Sept. 20. For the year, he took 28 shots, including 17 shots on goal. He earned game-winning goals against Corban College on Aug. 30 and against George Fox on Sept. 27.

"Erik did a great job for the team this year, and I know he will continue to progress and score more goals each year," Larson said. "He is a good example of how the freshmen made a huge impact on our program this season."

Casey Dineen has been named Second Team All-Northwest Conference.

Casey Dineen has been named Second Team All-Northwest Conference.

Erik Kaufman scored six goals for Willamette this fall.

Erik Kaufman scored six goals for Willamette this fall.