Oglethorpe's Papanikolopoulos Named to NSCAA All-South Atlantic Region First Team
Senior defender Nikos Papanikolopoulos of the Oglethorpe men's soccer team was named Tuesday to the 2013 NSCAA/Continental Tire NCAA Division III Men's All-South Atlantic Region First Team, as voted by members of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) from the region.
The award marks Papanikolopoulos' second career appearance on an NSCAA All-South Atlantic Region team. He earned Third Team accolades as a sophomore in 2011.
Papanikolopoulos, a native of Atlanta, played an integral role in the team's run to the SAA championship this season. For his efforts, he garnered SAA Defensive Player of the Year honors and was named to the All-SAA First Team. He served as captain of the defense that ranked second in the league in goals allowed with 19. He also showed a great deal of skill in getting forward into the attack. He finished third in the SAA with a .368 shot percentage and also tallied five goals in conference games. The latter mark placed him third in the league among all positions. He was named SAA Defensive Player of the Week Oct. 7 after his three-point performance in the team's 5-2 road victory at Sewanee Oct. 5.
The Stormy Petrels rode Papanikolopoulos' stalwart play in defense to an 11-3-3 record and their second conference title in three years, as they took three games in less than 48 hours to take home the trophy from the SAA Men's Soccer Championship in Conway, Ark., early last month. The Petrels ended the season having gone unbeaten in 14 of their final 15 games.
Papanikolopoulos' placement on the All-Region First Team automatically nominates him for NSCAA Division III All-America consideration. The All-America teams are set to be announced on Friday.