Pitzer College Student Brianna Lau ’20 Named Newcomer of the Year
Claremont, Calif. (November 10, 2016)—The Pomona-Pitzer Women’s Soccer team won top honors from the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) this week when the conference announced its 2016 women’s soccer end of the year awards. Pitzer College first-year student Brianna Lau ’20 was named Newcomer of the Year, her teammate Nadia Alaiyan (PO ’17) won Player of the Year and the team’s coaches were dubbed Coaching Staff of the Year. Five players were named First-Team All-SCIAC selections and three players earned Second-Team All-SCIAC distinction. The SCIAC end of the year awards are determined by the league’s eight head coaches.
Lau was named Newcomer of the Year in her first season as a collegiate athlete by helping the Sagehens hold the strongest backline in the conference and scoring three goals as a defender this season. Alaiyan earned Player of the Year in her senior season by anchoring the Pomona-Pitzer defensive line, which didn’t allow a goal on their home field all season.
Along with Lau and Alaiyan, Katie Tao (PO ’17), Abby Onderwyzer Gold (PO ’18) and Corey Goelz (PO ’17) earned First-Team All-SCIAC honors while Pitzer sophomore Peri Cuppens ’19, Natasha Thornton-Clark (PO ’18) and Danika Bethune (PO ’17) earned Second-Team All-SCIAC honors. Cuppens led the Sagehens in goals and points and finished second in the conference in goals with eight.
Head coach Jennifer Scanlon, who joined the Sagehens in 2003, shared Coaching Staff of the Year honors with assistant coaches Tony Basso, David Nolan and Samadhi Fisher. Together, they led the Sagehens to their best regular season to date and the team is playing in the NCAA Tournament for the second straight season.
“I always feel that awards, even though they honor individuals, are reflective of how a team does over the course of the season,” Scanlon said. “Recognition for so many of our players on the All-SCIAC team is a testament to the type of season we had and the terrific group of talented and committed players we have in the program.”
The Sagehens head to the NCAA Tournament as they host the First and Second Rounds. Pomona-Pitzer will host the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs on Saturday, November 12 at 11 a.m.
About Sagehen Athletics
Pitzer College joins with Pomona College to field 21 varsity teams – The Sagehens – that compete in Division III NCAA athletics and as members of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC). There are 10 men’s and 11 women’s teams: baseball (men), basketball, cross country, football (men), golf, lacrosse (women), soccer, softball (women), swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball (women) and water polo.