Nason, Coaching Staff Earn BIG EAST Soccer Honors
Mertins, Rogge, Nason named to all-conference teams
November 13, 2003

BLACKSBURG, Va. - Virginia Tech men's soccer player Ben Nason has been named the 2003 BIG EAST Conference Rookie of the Year and the Virginia Tech men's soccer coaching staff has been named the 2003 BIG EAST Conference Coaching Staff of the Year. Voting was conducted among the league's 13 head coaches, who were not permitted to vote for their own players.

Hokie senior Lasse Mertins was named to the All-BIG EAST Conference second team and Nason and Peer Rogge were named to the third team. The awards were presented Thursday night at the 2003 BIG EAST Men's Soccer Banquet in Vernon, Conn.

Nason finished second on the team in scoring with three goals and nine assists for 15 points. The nine assists tied for the league lead in overall games. He led the Hokies in shots with 65. Nason, a freshman from Stafford, Va., tallied a goal and three assists in BIG EAST play. Nason is the first Virginia Tech soccer player to win a BIG EAST Conference player of the year award.

Virginia Tech head coach Oliver Weiss and his staff guided the Hokies to a second place regular season finish with a 7-3 conference record, after being picked to finish ninth in the preseason BIG EAST coaches poll. Virginia Tech has been nationally-ranked each of the last six weeks and is 14-4-2 overall. The 14 victories tie the 1997 Hokie team for most wins in program history. Weiss, in just his second season with the Hokies is assisted by Kevin Korondi and John Sexton.

Mertins, a graduate student from Rotenburg, Germany, anchored the Hokies defense this season. The Hokies have scored 47 goals this season while limiting the opposition to just 19. Mertins had two goals and two assists for the Hokies this season. Joining Nason on the third team is Rogge, a sophomore from Schleswig, Germany. He was tied for fourth on the team with 13 points, scoring five goals and dishing out three assists. Three of his goals were game-winning tallys.