Navy and Loyola Maryland, the top two seeds in the Patriot League tournament, took home five of the conference’s six major awards announced Monday afternoon.
The Midshipmen (10-3 overall and 7-1 in the league), the top seed in the tournament and No. 9 in Monday’s Cascade/Maverik media poll, were represented by junior defenseman Chris Fennell as the Defensive Player of the Year, senior John Connors as the Goalkeeper of the Year and Rick Sowell as the William Lawson Coach of the Year.
The Greyhounds (10-3, 7-1), the No. 2 seed and No. 11 in the media poll, boasted the Offensive Player of the Year and the Rookie of the Year in freshman attackman Pat Spencer.
The one individual award not won by a Navy or Loyola Maryland player was Faceoff Specialist of the Year. Boston University's Sam Talkow won that honor in its inaugural season.
Fennell became the first back-to-back winner of the Defensive Player of the Year award since Army’s Bill Henderson in 2010 and 2011. Fennell, who is the first player in program history to win the honor in two consecutive seasons, ranks second in school history in caused turnovers with 51.
Connors joins Matt Russell and R.J. Wickham as Navy goalies to be honored by the Patriot League. He leads Division I with a 6.68 goals-against average and ranks ninth with a .562 save percentage.
Sowell is the first coach to earn Patriot League Coach of the Year honors in back-to-back campaigns. He has led the program to the regular-season title and the top seed in the conference tournament in consecutive years for the first time since the 2004 and 2005 squads accomplished that feat under Richie Meade.
Spencer is the first freshman to claim Offensive Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year awards outright. (Army’s Tim Pearson was named Co-Offensive Player and Rookie of the Year in 1999.) The Davidsonville resident and Boys’ Latin graduate tied Dave Kasemeyer’s 1984 program record for most points by a freshman with 58.
In addition to Fennell and Connors, senior attackman Patrick Keena, sophomore midfielder Casey Rees (Boys’ Latin), and junior long-stick midfielder Matt Rees (Boys’ Latin) made the first team for the Midshipmen.
Redshirt junior midfielder Brian Sherlock and sophomore defenseman Foster Huggins joined Spencer on the first team for the Greyhounds.
Loyola put senior attackman Zach Herreweyers, junior midfielder Romar Dennis and redshirt senior defenseman David Manning on the second team. Navy was represented by junior faceoff specialist Brady Dove.