Cal Baptist’s Aidan Apodaca named national player of the year
Aidan Apodaca, who led all divisions of NCAA soccer with 29 goals this season, is Cal Baptist’s first Division II national soccer player of the year.
Apodaca, a senior from Rancho Cucamonga, received that honor as well as first-team All-America honors on the Conference Commissioners Association first team. He led CBU to a 17-1-2 season, with the Lancers losing only to Cal Poly Pomona in the semifinals of the Division II West Regional.
Comeback trail proves fruitful for Aiden Apodaca, Cal Baptist
His 29 goals are a school and a conference record. He also set school records for goals in a match (all of the tallies in a 5-0 victory over Northwest Nazarene) and in a career (48 in four years), as well as single-season records for points (62), shots 111), multi-goal games (eight), consecutive games with a goal (nine), consecutive games with a point (nine) and hat tricks (three). Apodaca also set career records in points (108), shots (143), hat tricks (four) and multi-goal games (11).
He was joined on the All-America first team by teammate Abe Placito, a senior defender from Perris. Placito helped limit opponents to just 47 shots on goal, 2.35 per game, and he added two goals (including the winning goal in a 2-1 double overtime victory at Dixie State) and six assists.
Midfielder Hugo Gutierrez, a senior from Pico Rivera, was an honorable mention.