SANTA CLARA, Calif. – In a year where the honors keep rolling in, Santa Clara women's soccer junior midfielder Julie Johnston has been announced as a finalist for the U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year Award as well as a semi-finalist for the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy. Johnston was also named to Top Drawer Soccer's Team of the Season. She was also named a First-Team All-American for the second consecutive year.
This is the first nomination for Johnston. Nominees must be age eligible for any of the Youth National Teams and can only win the award once in their career.
To vote for Johnston for Young Female Athlete, click here.
Previous Bronco winners of the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy include Mandy Clemens in 1999 and Aly Wagner in 2002.
"I'm always surprised to be honored," said Johnston. "It means a lot especially seeing the other players who are up for the awards. Nothing is more rewarding than seeing your hard work pay off and having other people recognize that after training for a long time. I've been blessed with great opportunities and a great school to allow me to exceed my expectations as a player and a person."
"It's been an incredible year for Julie and we're both proud and happy for her," said Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith. "She is a very deserving candidate for the numerous awards she has received and is up for. We've had a year close to that recently with Bianca Henninger. To have two players go through similar situations is something we're proud of as a program. We get to see Julie's hard work every day. She works her tail off everyday, asks for extra work everyday and she does everything that you want a student-athlete to do in order to reach her potential. It's nice to see when all of that hard work has a pay off, both in terms of team success and individual recognition."
With Johnston piling up the accolades, it's easy to forget that she still has one more year of soccer at Santa Clara ahead of her. Both Johnston and Smith are excited to see how good Johnston can be.
"This is the kind of award recognition someone would have in their senior year and she did it as a junior," said Smith. "It's exciting to think about what might happen for her in her senior year. It's also exciting to think about what's in store for her in her future beyond college soccer. Hopefully she'll be with the National Team playing in World Cups and Olympic games and I know those are things that are on Julie's mind going forward. We're looking forward to this upcoming 2013 season and all that Julie can accomplish in her one last hurrah as a collegian."
"Personally next season will be my last year," said Johnston. "I came here with the ultimate goal to get to the Final Four and I have one more year to do that and I will do whatever it takes. I started getting ready for next year the day after our season ended. For the first time since I've been here we have an upperclassmen heavy team and I think we have a different drive for this upcoming year."
Despite missing the team's first seven games while leading the U.S. to a U-20 World Cup victory as the squad's captain and winning the Bronze Ball, Johnston was a First-Team All-WCC selection while leading the team in goals with eight and points with 21. She added five assists while attempting 53 with 27 on goal. Johnston added three game-winning goals including one in overtime vs. CSU Northridge on Sept. 21. She finished second in the conference in goals per game (0.53) and points per game (1.40).
M.A.C. Hermann Trophy
The M.A.C. Hermann Trophy is the highest individual award in intercollegiate soccer. The recipients are selected by head coaches of NCAA Division I programs who are members of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA).
Three finalists for the award will be announced and will be invited to the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis for a news conference on Fri., Jan. 11, 2013, where the winner will be announced. A dinner and presentation of the award will follow the news conference that evening.
U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year
The U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year awards are the oldest and most prestigious awards of their kind, dating back to 1984 for the men and 1985 for the women, while the Young Male and Young Female awards were added in 1998.