(FREDERICTON, NB) The UNB REDS are celebrating two major award winners, recognized in the 2022 Atlantic University Sport men’s soccer season-end awards.
Fourth-year striker Keji Adeniyi was named the league’s Most Valuable Player and head coach Barry Morrison was named AUS Coach of the Year.
“It’s a great complement to be recognized by peers from across the league,” said Morrison.
“It’s great to get to challenge each other every week. I believe it is more than an individual recognition, and recognizes the whole team we have working to coach here at UNB.”
“I’m lucky to get to work with some great coaches who help us be ready to compete every week. It’s the help of others that makes this possible, Ben Law and Tom Pheulpin on the road, on the bench and on the field. Joe Hamilton, Robert Tay-Burroughs, Sam Titus and Samson Adeyemo helping with video and tactical preparation, George Lucas with our keepers, our Integrated Support Team, Renee Matte, mental performance, Santiago Sanchez, Harrison Manderville and Parker Finnamore helping with athletic therapy and strength and conditioning. The team behind the team puts in untold hours to help ensure our student-athletes have what they need to perform.”
Morrison is the third UNB coach to be named Atlantic conference Coach of the Year, joining Miles Pinsent and Gary Brown as winners.
Adeniyi played in 11 of the REDS’ 12 games, registering eight goals and three assists, finishing third in league scoring.
“He’s done so much to earn this award,” said Morrison, of Adeniyi, the first UNB player to earn AUS MVP since Ken Morrison, in 2007. “Keji is fast and powerful and demands attention from other teams. His speed and strength mean that, for many, their only way of dealing with Keji is to foul him or try and get a body to him to disrupt his movement or runs.”
“This season, Keji took a major step forward in his mental strength, and ability to deal with all the attention and physical battles. He constantly gets up walks away from fouls and prepares to move on to the next play. He’s been clinical with his finishing, This year, he’s not only been finishing well, but also creating for others.”
Adeniyi is the fifth UNB player to win AUS MVP, joining Morrison, Paul Noble, Stewart Galloway and Dave Foley.
Adeniyi was also named an AUS 1st Team All-Star, along with fellow striker Luke Rosettani
Midfielder Lars Gierull was named a 2nd Team All-Star.
“It means so much for these players and our program to have them recognized for their performances,” said Coach Morrison. “All three are major contributors to the work we do, and how we play. They’re all players who make a difference both offensively and defensively. Luke and Keji have had a great season, working together, and their connection has been evident when you watch our team attack. Lars is calm and cool under pressure and allows us to have the ball as a team. These three may standout, but we have a great group of players around them to help them perform at their best in games, and even more who are key to helping us prepare for games each week.”
The REDS, who finished the AUS regular season in third place, take on the Dalhousie Tigers, Wednesday, in quarter final action at the AUS Championship tournament, at Cape Breton University. Game time is 3:00pm.