Soccer honors for Cardinal men; Thompson on hoops watch list


A program-record five Stanford men's soccer players were named to the 2015 NSCAA NCAA Division I Men's All-Far West Region Teams, it was announced Wednesday.

Junior forward Jordan Morris along with senior co-captains Ty Thompson and Brandon Vincent were first team selections, junior goalkeeper Andrew Epstein earned a spot on the second team and redshirt senior midfielder Eric Verso was selected to the third team.

Jordan Morris
The quintet has led the Cardinal to its first College Cup in 13 years. Stanford, which landed in Kansas City on Wednesday afternoon, plays Akron at Sporting Park on Friday in one national semifinal on ESPNU (7:30 p.m. CT).

It's the third NSCAA All-Far West Region nod for Morris, who was a first teamer last season and also named to the third team as a freshman in 2013. A MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist and the Pac-12 Player of the Year, Stanford's striker has a career-high 11 goals in 16 appearances for Stanford in 2015.

In his last 12 games with the Cardinal, the junior has 10 goals, three assists and 23 points. He is ninth in the country in game-winning goals (5), 12th in goals per game (0.69) and 13th in points per game (1.56).

Morris missed five collegiate matches this season due to responsibilities with U.S. Soccer. He split time between the senior team, making six appearances with the MNT in 2015, while also earning 11 caps with the U-23s, scoring six goals and tallying four assists. With the USMNT, Morris scored against Mexico on April 15 and assisted on the game-winning goal against the Netherlands on June 5.

A Type 1 diabetic, he also lent his support to Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's (JDRF) "T1D Looks Like Me Campaign" for National Diabetes Awareness Month (NDAM) in November.

Like Morris, Vincent is a MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist and was on the NSCAA All-Far West Region first team last season. The 2015 Pac-12 Men's Soccer Scholar-Athlete of the Year has anchored Stanford's back line over the past four years, starting in each and every one of his 78 appearances.

The two-time captain has also claimed back-to-back Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year honors and is the only person to ever win the award, which was instituted last season.

Third on the team in goals (5) and fifth in points (12), Vincent's defensive work has championed a Stanford unit that is 11th in the nation in goals against average (0.69).

In August, he was called by U.S. Under-23 Men's National Team head coach Andi Herzog for the first College Identification Training Camp. Vincent scored the third goal for the U.S. in its 3-1 win over Club Tijuana's Segunda Premier Team, which wrapped camp on August 7.

The Cardinal senior is also one of 10 men's finalists for the 2015 Senior CLASS Award in collegiate soccer. That award is given to a NCAA Division I senior student-athlete who has notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.

The NSCAA recognition is the first for Thompson, who in mid-November also earned his the first All-Pac-12 first team accolade of his career. Also a CoSIDA Academic All-District winner, the senior has nine career assists, including three this season.

Recognized by the NSCAA for the first time in his career, the junior Epstein is 16th in the NCAA in goals against average (.694) and earlier this year helped the Cardinal engineer a shutout streak of 469:38, the program's longest since 2007. His seven solo shutouts are tied for ninth in Stanford single-season history and the team's 0.69 goals against average is the program's best since 2002.

In late November, Epstein and Eric Verso were named CoSIDA Third Team Academic All-Americans.

Verso rounds out Stanford's all-region performers with his selection to the third team, his first NSCAA nod.

The redshirt senior is third nationally in total assists (12) and sixth in assists per game (0.57). Verso and teammate Corey Baird (11) are two of just 20 players in the country with 10 or more assists. They are just the ninth and 10th Stanford players since 1980 to reach that number, the fourth and fifth since 1985 and the first since 2002.

Stanford is the only team in the nation that has two different players with at least 10 assists.

Stanford's five NSCAA All-Far West Region selections surpassed the previous program record of four, achieved in 2014, 2000, 1998 and 1997.

Women's basketball

Stanford junior Lili Thompson was among 50 players named to the Naismith Trophy Women's Watch List the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Wednesday.

It's the second such early season recognition for Thompson, who was named to the John R. Wooden Award Women's Preseason Top 30 on Nov. 17.

The Atlanta Tipoff Club administers the Naismith Awards, which have become the most prestigious national honors in all of college basketball. Named in honor of Dr. James Naismith, inventor of the game of basketball, the Naismith Trophy recognizes the top Men's and Women's College Basketball Players of the Year.

Thompson is coming off a Pac-12 Player of the Week nod on Nov 30 following Stanford's most recent stretch of games.

She was named the 2015 Gulf Coast Showcase Most Valuable Player after leading the Cardinal to the tournament title with averages of 21.0 points and 6.0 assists per game at the event in Florida.

Thompson led off with 26 points on 10-of-21 shooting in the opener against Missouri State on Nov. 27, an 82-65 Stanford win, then scored 19 and handed out a season-high seven assists in a 74-66 victory over Dayton a day later.

In the championship on Sunday night, Thompson scored 19 and went 9-of-9 at the line to lift the Cardinal to a 71-65 overtime win against Purdue.

She began the week with a 21-point outing in Stanford's 61-58 setback against Santa Clara on Nov. 23.

In four games, Thompson averaged 20.8 points, 6.0 assists and 1.8 steals per game, shot 42.2 percent from the floor (27-for-64) and was even better from long distance, knocking down 44.1 percent of her 3-point attempts (15-for-34). She missed just one free throw all week, going 14-for-15 from the line (.933).

Thompson has scored 20 or more in four of Stanford's seven games this season. She's had nine career 20-point efforts, with eight coming in the month of November.

Her 26-point outing against Missouri State was her fourth consecutive, making the junior captain the first Cardinal guard to score 20 in four straight games since Candice Wiggins in 2008.

She is fifth in the conference in scoring this season, averaging 19.3 points per game, sixth in assists (5.0/game), second in free throw percentage (.909), first in 3-point field goals made per game (3.3) and eighth in 3-point percentage (.451).

With 901 career points, Thompson is close to becoming Stanford's 36th 1,000-point scorer.

— Stanford Athletics

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