Nathan, Shepherd, Brisco Named All-New England
Contact: Matthew Hart
AMHERST, Mass. – The Amherst College women’s soccer team continued to pile up postseason accolades Wednesday as the New England Women’s Intercollegiate Soccer Association (NEWISA) named a trio of Lord Jeffs to its All-Region squads. After earning invitations to NEWISA’s Senior Bowl last month, midfielder Kathryn Nathan ’13 and defender Sandy Shepherd ’13 each received first team honors, while forward Amanda Brisco ’14 earned a spot on the third team.
Nathan adds the All-New England nod to a lengthy list of career accomplishments, having most recently earned All-America recognition for the second consecutive year from both the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and D3Soccer.com. Last year’s conference co-Player of the Year, Nathan was a first team All-NESCAC pick once again in 2012.
After her breakout junior year, Nathan continued to general the Jeff offense as a senior co-captain, ranking third in the conference with 21 points thanks to a league-best 11 assists, the highest figure in Amherst history since at least 1995. She was at her best during the Jeffs' six-match win streak to close the regular season, scoring three of her five goals on the season and handing out six assists during an impressive run that saw Amherst outscore opponents 21-4.
Shepherd, meanwhile, joined Nathan on the All-NESCAC first team while also garnering All-Region honors from the NSCAA. One of three backs on the NEWISA first team, she anchored a Jeff defense that surrendered the league’s second-fewest goals during conference play (6). Amherst posted 10 shutouts in 2012, tallying the NESCAC’s top goal differential both overall (47-14) and in conference play (22-6).
A routine stopper of opponents’ trips into the Amherst half, Shepherd also showed a flair for the dramatic when she moved onto the attack. After a goal and assist during the conference playoffs in 2011, the back scored her lone points of 2012 when she headed in a Nathan corner to break a 1-1 tie in the second half of Amherst’s NESCAC semifinal match with Bowdoin on Nov. 3.
Amherst’s third All-NESCAC first-teamer, Brisco was one of the region’s most dominant forwards all season, leading the conference with 24 total points as she ranked among the conference’s top five in both goals (9) and assists (6).
The NESCAC Rookie of the Year in 2010, Brisco joined Shepherd as an NSCAA All-Region pick this fall. She was at her best in the postseason, striking for four of Amherst’s five goals in the NESCAC and NCAA tournaments. The junior was also a force early in the fall, posting a pair of goals and three assists as Amherst outscored opponents 14-0 over its first four matches.
Amherst and Middlebury were the only NESCAC schools represented on the NEWISA list, with the Panthers’ Elizabeth Foody earning first team recognition and Julia Favorito landing on the second team.