Hawaii soccer’s turnaround season may not have resulted in a Big West tournament berth, but it sure produced a haul of postseason awards.
Here’s the nods UH players received on Wednesday for the Big West 2016 season:
Raisa Strom-Okimoto, MF, First team
Addie Steiner, F, First team
Storm Kenui, D, Second team
T.J. Reyno, D, Honorable mention
Monk Berger, GK, Honorable mention
Tia Furuta, F, Freshman team
That represents the biggest haul of awards UH received since it joined the Big West in 2012. The Rainbow Wahine never had two first-team players in the same year; the only one previously was Tiana Fujimoto in 2013.
The player of the year awards (Offensive, Midfielder, Defensive, Goalkeeper, Freshman) were split between regular-season champion Cal State Northridge and third-place Long Beach State. (Curiously, none for second-place UC Irvine.) CSUN’s Keith West was named Big West Coach of the Year.
It was the third year in a row Kenui made the second team, although the first as a defender. For Steiner, it was her first time being named to an all-conference first team; she was a two-time second-teamer at Northwestern. For Strom-Okimoto, it was a drastic (and well-deserved) leap into prominence after a quiet freshman season coming off a knee injury. For Berger, getting some recognition was a nice way to end a career that began on the all-freshman team in 2013. For Reyno, an honorable mention was a respectable way to go out for a talented player who battled through numerous injuries and put a solid final season together. And for Furuta, you could see the promise of the years to come, especially when she opened Big West play with a bang on the road.
The full Big West awards can be found here.