Schwarz One of 34 Finalists for National Player of the Year Honor
Ryan Schwarz is one of 34 finalists for Soccer News Net Player of the Year. (Ray Acevedo)
Schwarz One of 34 Finalists for National Player of the Year Honor
Friday, November 20, 2009
Valparaiso netminder Ryan Schwarz (Rockford, Ill./Boylan Catholic), honored as the 2009 Horizon League Goalkeeper of the Year ten days ago, has been named one of 34 finalists nationally for the Soccer News Net Player of the Year award.

Schwarz wrapped up a stellar season in 2009 after missing the 2008 campaign, earning his second league Goalkeeper of the Year accolade.  The redshirt junior broke Crusader single-season records for victories (10), shutouts (7) and goals against average (1.02), while helping Valpo to a third-place finish in the Horizon League regular season standings and a spot in the league semifinals.  His career goals against average of 1.57 is tops in Crusader history, while his 13 career shutouts are just one shy of Valpo’s career record in that category.

Soccer News Net is comprised of six regional websites that cover action on the pitch from the youth level all the way up through the professional ranks.  The editors of each of the six sites in the Soccer News Net network nominated up to six local players apiece for the award, each of which will be eligible for the regional player of the year award.  The nominations included athletes playing at colleges within each site’s coverage area, as well as athletes from the area playing collegiately elsewhere in the country.  A dozen additional at-large selections rounded out the nominations.  Schwarz was one of five nominees from ChicagoLand Soccer News (www.chicagolandsoccernews.com).

Fans from across the country are encouraged to vote for their choice for the Soccer News Net Player of the Year by visiting any of the six regional websites through December 19.  Online fan voting will account for 40% of the total toward the award. The remaining 60% of the vote will be cast by the editorial staffs of the six web sites.