Lead by first-team selections Eric Albin and Zak Nasby, Tigers grab their best-ever haul of post-season accolades
In the wake of Newbergs first-ever appearance in the Pacific Conference playoffs, an all-time high seven Tigers received all-league honors and head coach Brian Wood was named coach of the year for the second straight season.
Leading the way was senior attack Eric Albin, who smashed just about every Newberg season and career offensive record to help the Tigers finish 10-11 overall and make an appearance in the Cascade Cup playoff.
I was ecstatic, Albin said of the honor. My coach told me in front of the team or they overheard and they all congratulated me. It was awesome.
The previous single-season scoring record was set in 2012 by Connor Runia, who posted 47 points in Newbergs first season as a varsity program.
Albin surpassed that mark by midseason and finished with 59 goals and 43 assists for 102 points, helping the team set a new record with 206 goals and a 9.8 goals/game average for the season
It speaks to his engine, his willingness to dish the ball and make the team as good as possible, Wood said. Hes willing to pass and we have people able to get open. Its a two-way street with talent on both sides.
Also making the first team was sophomore defenseman Zak Nasby, giving the Tigers two first-team players for the first time ever.
Earning second-team honors were sophomore attack Eric Wilson and senior midfielder Ezekiel Stone.
Wilson also surpassed Runias record after netting 54 goals and 26 assists for 80 total points. Stone finished third on the team and first among midfielders with 34 goals and 11 assists for 45 points and led the team with 98 ground balls.
Senior attack Justin Kosmicki, who totaled 29 goals and 13 assists for 42 points, was named to the third team, as was senior goalie Austin Collins, who made 252 saves and recorded a 60 percent save rate.
We play in a tough conference, Wood said. Those guys should all be very proud. It just shows the strength of our program. We have some good kids in our group, both seniors and underclassmen.
In all, Newberg placed players from all four positions (attack, midfield, defense and goalie) at all three levels of the all-league team.
With five of the seven players being seniors, it will be a challenge for the Tigers to match or exceed the level of success earned by this years team, but with overall depth being buoyed by growing numbers at the youth and middle-school levels, a promising future still awaits.
I feel like we pushed it farther than weve ever pushed it before, Albin said. Im kind of sad to leave, to be honest, but I left a great legacy behind and I hope next season they can keep moving forward.