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Niners place three on All-Conference USA Teams

IRVING, Texas – The Charlotte women’s soccer team had three of its standouts earn All-Conference USA honors Tuesday, as the league announced its annual postseason awards. Sophomore Martha Thomas received first-team recognition, junior Katie O’Neill was named to the third team and Megan McCallister garnered all-freshman honors.

Thomas earned the second All-Conference USA Team mention of her career, and initial First Team plaudit, after finishing the regular season as the top scorer in the league with a career-high 13 goals. She ranked among the national leaders in the statistical category all season with three multi-goal scoring matches, tying a career best.

The Weston, Florida, native also ranked among the C-USA leaders for shots (92, 1st) and points (29, 2nd). Both marks established new career highs as she continued her dominate play to begin her collegiate career, while the shot total puts her first among 49ers in a single season.

Thomas became only the third player in program history to record more than one season of double-digit goals and is the first of the trio to do it in her first two campaigns. Her 24 goals through two years tie her for ninth on the school’s career list.

She was a perfect 3-of-3 on penalty kicks in 2015 and tallied game-winning goals in the season opener against Coastal Carolina (Aug. 23) and in the first Conference USA match against UAB (Sept. 25).

O’Neill made an immediate impact on the program in her first campaign wearing the green and white after transferring from Binghamton. She topped the squad with six assists, while tying for third with four goals for 14 points. Her 14 points and 44 shots placed second on the team, trailing only Thomas in both categories. The six assists tied for fifth in C-USA.

The Kearney, New Jersey, product had her best game against UAB in her Conference USA debut, factoring into all three Charlotte scores with two goals and an assist in the home victory. Her performance was worthy of a spot on the TopDrawerSoccer.com National Team of the Week.

She added goals against Gardner-Webb (Sept. 4) and WKU (Oct. 18), while recording five of her six assists against league foes. Her score against Gardner-Webb proved to be the game winner.

O’Neill capped the year with two assists in the season finale against FIU (Oct. 30), including setting Thomas up for her final goal late in regulation against the Panthers to mark the final tally of 2015 for the Niners. The pair was the only two players to start all 19 matches this fall for Charlotte.

McCallister showed signs of a promising career with five goals, three assists and 13 points in her inaugural collegiate campaign. She ranked second on the squad with her five goals, while tying for second with three assists and placing third with 13 points and 35 shots. Her 20 shots on goal were also second, only behind Thomas’ 47.

The Asheville, North Carolina, native found the back of the net early in her career with two goals in the season’s first-three contests, including in the opener against Coastal Carolina. She added an assist in the next home match, against Georgia Southern (Aug. 30), for her only three-point effort of the year.

McCallister chipped in with goals against USF (Sept. 11), who was receiving votes in the national poll at the time, along with in Conference USA action against Rice (Oct. 11) and at UTEP (Oct. 23). Her road league score against the Miners proved to be the game winner as it came with just under four minutes left in regulation.

2015 All-Conference USA Honors
First Team
F: Martha Thomas, Charlotte

F: Rachel Holden, North Texas
F: Lauren Hughes, Rice
M: Kelly Culicerto, Marshall
M: Karla Pineda, North Texas
M: Aleah Davis, UTEP
D: Marie Egan, FIU
D: Erica Burt, Florida Atlantic
D: Jenna Dubs, Marshall
D: Chandler Clark, WKU
GK: Kelsey Brouwer, Middle Tennessee
GK: Jackie Kerestine, North Texas

Second Team
F: Claire Emslie, Florida Atlantic
F: Kathryn Sloan, Louisiana Tech
F: Sydney Arnold, Marshall
F: Iris Achterhof, Old Dominion
M: Cameron Cox, Middle Tennessee
M: Samantha Chaiken, Rice
M: Hannah Chua, WKU
D: Donya Solomon-Ali, Louisiana Tech
D: Emily Jorgenson, Middle Tennessee
D: Jasmine Isokpunwu, Rice

Third Team
F: Geovana Alves, Florida Atlantic
F: Holly Hargreaves, Rice
F: Angela Cutaia, UTEP
F: Iris Dunn, WKU
M: Katie O’Neill, Charlotte
M: Asta Arnadottir, Florida Atlantic
M: Morgan Key-Adams, UAB
D: Tess Graham, North Texas
D: Molly Grisham, North Texas
D: Kathryn Hill, Old Dominion
D: Jenny Fichera, Rice
GK: Sydney Drinkwater, Florida Atlantic

Freshman
Megan McCallister, Charlotte
Lyrik Fryer, FIU
Mylene Roy-Ouellet, Louisiana Tech
Jayne Lawman, Marshall
Ashley Seltzer, Marshall
Taylor Torres, North Texas
Iris Achterhof, Old Dominion
Dominique Mazero, Rice
Kiersten Bradley, Southern Miss
Alyssa Palacios, UTEP
Nicole Roseland, WKU

Co-Offensive Players of the Year
Rachel Holden, North Texas
Lauren Hughes, Rice

Defensive Player of the Year
Kelsey Brouwer, Middle Tennessee

Midfielder of the Year
Karla Pineda, North Texas

Freshman of the Year
Iris Achterhof, Old Dominion

Co-Coaches of the Year
Patrick Baker, Florida Atlantic
Kevin Long, Marshall