UNCG’s Ngando Named United Soccer Coaches MAC Hermann Trophy Semifinalist
United Soccer Coaches Announces MAC Hermann Trophy Semifinalists
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Sophomore midfielder J.C. Ngando of the UNC Greensboro (UNCG) men’s soccer team was named a 2022 Missouri Athletic Club (MAC) Hermann Trophy Semifinalist, as announced by the United Soccer Coaches on Wednesday.
The MAC Hermann Trophy is the most coveted individual honor in NCAA Division I soccer and has been awarded annually since 1967. Ngando is one of 15 selected as a semifinalist and is one of three sophomores on the list.
Today, the process of selecting a winner begins at the start of the college soccer season when a Watch List (men and women) of potential players is compiled by United Soccer Coaches All-America Committees. At the end of the collegiate regular season, 15 players from All-America voting by Division I coaches are announced as semifinalists for the award. That list is then voted on through an online voting process by men’s and women’s Division I soccer coaches whose teams are current United Soccer Coaches College Services members.
In early December, the top three vote-getters for both the men’s and women’s trophy are announced as finalists for the award. These six individuals are invited to an annual banquet held at the Missouri Athletic Club of St. Louis. That evening, the winners of the two awards are announced and receive a 10-pound crystal replica soccer ball made by Tyrone Crystal of County Tyrone, Northern Ireland.
Most recently, Ngando earned United Soccer Coaches All-South Region first team recognition. At the conclusion of the regular season, Ngando was named the Southern Conference Player of the Year. He is the eighth from UNCG to be named SoCon Player of the Year, as Theo Collomb earned the recognition last year. This is also the seventh time in SoCon history that a school earned SoCon Player of the Year for more than one year straight. Ngando also earned his second-straight SoCon first team recognition.
The Paris, France native started and played in all 21 games this season, assisting the Spartans to a 13-2-6 overall record and a 4-0-1 SoCon mark. This was the first time since 2004 when UNCG went 6-0-1 that the Spartans went undefeated. The Spartans earned its ninth regular season title after defeating Wofford, 2-1, on Saturday, October 29 in Spartanburg, South Carolina and their fifth SoCon Tournament Title with a 2-1 win over Mercer on Sunday, November 12 at home.
UNCG won its second Tournament title in three years, the most recent during the 2020-21 spring season. UNCG earned its fourth SoCon double crown in program history (Regular and Tournament Championships). The last time they won the double was 2006. The Spartans also won it in 2005 and 1998.
Ngando finished third on the team with 22 points, scoring four goals and leading the team with 14 assists, for a season best. Two of his four goals this season were game-winning goals. He also went 2-for-4 in penalty kick attempts. His 14 assists this season ranks seventh in UNCG history. Ngando earned SoCon Offensive Player of the Week twice this season.
Among the SoCon, Ngando finished first in assists per game and total assists, fourth in shots per game and total points, and seventh in points per game.
Among Division I, he is currently second in total assists, fourth in assists per game, 49th in total points, 81st in shots per game, and 96th in points per game.
With the SoCon tournament title, the Spartans earned their 12th Division I Tournament bid. It was the 21st time in a NCAA Tournament game since the program started, with seven appearances at the Division III level and two at the Division II level. It was the second time under fourth-year Head Coach Chris Rich, a two-time SoCon Head Coach of the Year.
UNCG earned a first-round bye after receiving a No. 12 ranking in the Tournament. The Spartans tied Ohio State, 1-1, and advanced after a 6-5 result in penalty kicks. They then tied No. 5 Stanford in the third round, 1-1, and advanced again with a 3-1 result in penalty kicks. UNCG concluded its season with a 2-0 loss to No. 13 Indiana at home in front of a sellout crowd of 3,622 on Saturday, December 3.
History of the Hermann Trophy
In 1967, Robert Hermann, the president of the National Professional Soccer League (NPSL) and the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the NPSL’s successor, the North American Soccer League, established a trophy to annually recognize the top men’s collegiate soccer player. The trophy, named the Hermann Trophy, has been awarded each year since 1967. In 1988, a second Hermann Trophy was inaugurated to recognize the top women’s collegiate player of the year.
In 1986, the Missouri Athletic Club (MAC) began naming an annual player of the year as a rival to the Hermann Trophy. Then in 1996, United Soccer Coaches (then NSCAA) initiated its own annual player of the year award. These three competing awards began merging three years later when United Soccer Coaches and MAC agreed to cooperate on naming a combined collegiate player of the year. Finally, beginning in 2002, United Soccer Coaches, the Missouri Athletic Club and the Hermann Trophy merged to create a unified award for the top college soccer player of the year. The original Hermann Award Trophy is on display in the Hermann Atrium located in the McDonnell Athletic Center at Mary Institute Country Day School in Ladue, Mo.
2022 Men’s MAC Hermann Trophy Semifinalists
Name School Class Pos Hometown Stephen Afrifa Florida International University Sr. F Toronto, Ont. Knut Ahlander Southern Methodist University GR-5 M Notteroy, Norway Eythor Bjorgolfsson University of Kentucky Sr. F Jessheinm, Norway Moise Bombito University of New Hampshire Jr. D Montreal, Que. Luis Grassow University of Kentucky Sr. D Munich, Germany Noah Gulden Lipscomb University GR-5 D Drammen, Norway Keegan Hughes Stanford University Sr. D Heath, Ohio Levonte Johnson Syracuse University Sr. F Brampton, Ont. Duncan McGuire Creighton University Jr. F Omaha, Neb. Shakur Mohammed Duke University So. F Kumasi, Ghana Alex Nagy University of Vermont GR-5 M Bow, N.H. JC Ngando University of North Carolina-Greensboro So. M Paris, France Ilijah Paul University of Washington So. F Gilbert, Ariz. Peter Stroud Duke University Jr. M Chester, N.J. Milo Yosef Marshall University Sr. M Aachen, Germany
Courtesy of Denise Archetto
Assistant Athletic Director For Strategic Communications