Men's soccer announces 2019 team awards

From left to right: Aidan Wood '20, Luke Eckels '20, Jefri Schmidt '20 (Brendan Ujvary photo)
From left to right: Aidan Wood '20, Luke Eckels '20, Jefri Schmidt '20 (Brendan Ujvary photo)

Three Hamilton College men's soccer players were honored recently as the program selected its 2019 team award winners.

Aidan Wood '20 (Ipswich, Mass./Waring School) received the Jacob Aron Shapiro '05 Memorial Award, Jefri Schmidt '20 (Bendar Seri Begawan, Brunei/St. Paul's School [N.H.]) was given the Manfred von Schiller Prize, and Luke Eckels '20 (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood HS) was presented with the Coaches Award. Eckels and Schmidt were team captains.

The Jacob Aron Shapiro '05 Memorial Award is presented to the player who best exemplifies the qualities that Jacob held in great measure: A natural physical gift, a tenacious and joyful spirit, an affinity for competition and a fierce commitment to those around him. Wood was a three-time member of the all-NESCAC team, including the first team as a sophomore in 2017. He was a conference player of the week twice and the Division III player of the week once. He finished his 67-match career with 48 points on 18 goals and 12 assists and notched six game-winning goals.

The von Schiller Prize is given in honor of Manfred von Schiller (the program's head coach from 1959 to 1998) to a player who displays team spirit, leadership and integrity. Schmidt wrapped up his 61-match career with 31 points on 11 goals and nine assists. He recorded four game-winning goals including ones against Connecticut College and Wesleyan University as a first-year in 2016. 

The Coaches' Award is given to the team's most valuable player on and off the field. Eckels was a four-time member of the all-NESCAC team, a three-time all-New England Region selection and a two-time team captain. He was also voted the 2016 conference rookie of the year. He started in 64 of his 67 match appearances and played the majority of his Hamilton career at center back. He finished with two goals and an assist for five points.

These three student-athletes helped lead the Continentals (6-8-2, 3-5-2 NESCAC) to a NESCAC championship quarterfinal appearance for the fourth year in a row. Hamilton tied eventual national champion Tufts University 1-1 on Oct. 13. The Continentals went 4-4-0 in the conference championship the past four years and made it to the final for the first time in 2016.