Sporting KC held the annual Pitch Black event tonight at Sporting Park where the club's 2015 awards were presented. The winners were determined after a vote from SKC players, media members, and fans.
Your 2015 Sporting KC award winners are....
Most Valuable Player:
Was there ever any question? Benny is having the season of his career with 12 goals and 19 assists (club record) across all competitions. He has done it all, even playing CB for a few minutes at the beginning of the season. He has shown a fantastic work rate and come through in huge moments. It has been a pleasure watching him this season and this is well deserved.
Offensive Player of the Year:
This is a good choice for me as well. He leads all players with 16 goals across all competitions and has 2 assists as well. The goals are important of course, but why I'm really glad he was rewarded is because he does so much for the offense that won't show up on the stat sheet. He is absolutely relentless and will wear down a defense (and their midfield) both mentally and physically. The guy takes an absolute beating every game! He leads the team in shots and shots on goal which a sign of where he plays, but he leads by so much because of his ability to create something out of nothing. Congrats, Dom.
Defensive Player of the Year:
Matt Besler & Soni Mustivar
I love that they gave both of them the award. Can you image this season without either one of them? Matt Besler has been the leader and veteran presence to hold everything together. He has captained a great season so far, and he has been the lone constant in the lineup. It is his 4th time winning in the last 5 seasons. Soni came in and held down a very difficult position to play. A very important position in PV's system. And perhaps most importantly, he has filled a position that many were doubting would ever truly be filled again after losing Uri. This is the way it had to be. Both very well deserved.
Goal of the Year:
Well.... the voting did of course take place before Nemeth's other wordly game winner in Portland, but Benny takes a second award for the the stoppage time goal against Houston. It was one crazy game, and that was one crazy finish. I personally liked his goal against RSL a bit more, but Benny has been so good that it just seems right that he got 2 awards doesn't it? Here is the goal:
Newcomer of the Year:
Aren't you guys just so glad.... that... that we...... found Nemo.....? Movie references aside, Nemeth quickly became one of the most important players on the team. You could from his first touches in pre-season that he was going to do well. Always dangerous flying in from his left wing, he has contributed 15 goals and 7 assists in all competitions. Combine those for a total of 22 which are the most goals and assists for newcomer since 96'. He curled in one of the most classy and important goals of the season in the US Open Cup final, and he beat the entire Portland defense for a Goal of the Year candidate. He honestly may be too good for MLS, but we have been enjoying every minute of him on the pitch this season. Here's to several more years of this right..... RIGHT?
The following awards were chosen by the club itself:
Victory Project Humanitarian of the Year: Kevin Ellis (#GoKitGo)
Bob Gansler Academy Player of the Year: Ryan Kellogg
Sporting Club Network Member of the Year: Heartland Soccer Association
Academy Affiliate of the Year: Sporting Southern Indiana