Clockwise from top left: Coach of the Year John Scott, Ross MacKinnon, Chris Walter, and Matthew Robertson

Hartwick's Scott Tabbed MAC Coach of the Year

November 18, 2013

On Friday morning, the Mid-American Conference announced Hartwick head coach John Scott, who has piloted the Hawks to the league playoffs, as the 2013 Gary V. Palmisano Men's Soccer Coach of the Year. In addition, senior back Matthew Robertson (Banchory, Scotland/Binghamton University), sophomore back Ross MacKinnon (Glasgow, Scotland/Jordanhill School), and junior midfielder Chris Walter (Amherst, NY/Nichols School) each were named to the MAC Second Team.

"Being awarded the MAC's Coach of the Year is absolutely unexpected," said Scott. "I had been eagerly awaiting the release of the 1st and 2nd teams to see which Hartwick players had been honored and to receive this coaching award is a complete shock. I thank my assistant, Beau Brinsko, for the support he provides to me daily, to our Hartwick team for getting the results that made this possible, and to the MAC coaches who recognized Hartwick's progress this season."

Scott led Hartwick, which was picked last in the MAC Preseason Poll, to a record of 3-2-1 and a third-place finish in the league standings. The win total included a 2-0 blanking of then-No. 9 Akron on its home field, which snapped the Zips' 49-game (46-0-3) conference unbeaten streak. It was also Hartwick's first win over Akron since 1973 and snapped an 11-game winless streak against the Zips.

The Hawks also shutout West Virginia, which was picked to finish second in the league, and Northern Illinois in a dramatic 2-1 double overtime victory to clinch the Hawks' first playoff berth in four seasons.

It marks just the second time a Hartwick coach has been named a conference coach of the year in 14 seasons competing in both the MAC and in the Atlantic Soccer Conference. The three regular season wins ties for the most for the Hawks since joining the MAC in 2007.

"I also would like to give special thanks to my dad who passed away unexpectedly in April," added Scott. "As a coach himself, my dad was always there to offer me regular advice and support and I know he'd have been extremely proud of this news."

With the trio of Hawks landing on the second team, Hartwick ties for the third among conference members for the most selections on the 24-members teams.

Both Robertson and MacKinnon were keys cogs to a defensive corps which surrendered only 19 goals in 17 matches this season. The Hawks allowed 1.12 goals per game overall with a goals against average of 1.04. Both totals ranked third overall in the league this season. 'Wick was also third in shutouts per game within league matches after blanking the high-powered offenses of Akron and West Virginia.

Robertson started all 14 matches he played in this season at the center back position, logging 1347 minutes. He scored the first goal of his career to give the Hawks the lead in a 1-1 draw with Bowling Green in conference play. He has played in 40 games in his career at 'Wick registering a goal and two assists.

"Matthew has been a quality central defender for us, no doubt about that," Scott contributed. "He has an ability to play short and long, he's technically very gifted and he's been extremely reliable for us defensively. This year, Robo has stayed clear of injuries and that has allowed him to showcase his abilities all season long and it's fitting that a player of his quality receives this recognition, albeit in his final season, as there's never been any doubt that he's been good enough."

MacKinnon also started in all 14 of his game played in 1440 minutes of action in the back. He's played in 30 games in his two seasons at 'Wick with one game-winning goal in his freshman campaign and one assist.

"Ross cemented his place at left back following a very good spring season, and now as a sophomore he's proved to be very dependable and consistent for us," said Scott. "Ross learned a lot about the demands of the college game as a freshman and I've been delighted to see him play with a confidence that matches his ability on the ball this season. Ross is another example of hard work being recognized and that's all been down to him working diligently to get it right."

Walter played in 1423 minutes in 15 starts for the Hawks in midfield. He scored two goals and assisted on two others to finish with six points to rank third on the team.

No goal was bigger than his tally in the 86th minute which gave Hartwick a two-goal cushion and served as a dagger to Akron in the Hawks' epic win. He also assisted goals in wins over UMass-Lowell and NIU. He has played in 43 matches in three seasons with five goals and four assists for 14 points.

"Since his freshman year, Chris has worked hard to develop his technical ability, and due to his level of improvement on the ball we've been able to utilize his strengths as a central midfielder in his junior year," Scott stated. "Chris was our team's MVP last season playing at right back and this award is further recognition that his desire to progress and develop as a player has paid dividends through many months of hard work."

Third-seeded Hartwick continues its season today in the MAC Semifinals against #2 Western Michigan. The Hawks and Broncos kickoff at Akron's FirstEnergy Stadium - Cub Cadet Field beginning at 4 p.m. If Hartwick advances, it plays in Sunday's championship match at 1 p.m.

"While we graciously accept these individual awards," added Scott, "let's not forget that we have 24 players on the roster who've all been working hard for each other on a daily basis. Our coaching staff is very aware that these awards would not have been possible without the team's collective effort and it's important that we acknowledge that."

All-MAC First Team (12 Members)
F Reinaldo Brenes, Akron
F Eric Stevenson, Akron
F Andy Bevin, West Virginia
M Adam Najem, Akron
M Aodhan Quinn, Akron
M Victor Souto, Akron
M Russell Cicerone, Buffalo
M Majed Osman, West Virginia
D Brian Gallego, Akron
D Robert Derschang, Akron
D Andrew Souders, Akron
GK Fernando Pina, Akron

All-MAC Second Team (12 Members)
F Ryan Comiskey, Bowling Green
F Isaac Kannah, Northern Illinois
F Oliver Mayer, Western Michigan
M Danny Baraldi, Bowling Green
M Brandon Silva, Bowling Green
M Chris Walter, Hartwick
M Marco Lobo, Western Michigan
D Saad Abdul Salaam, Akron
D Ross MacKinnon, Hartwick
D Matthew Robertson, Hartwick
GK Michael Wiest, Bowling Green
GK Chase Rau, Western Michigan

2013 MAC Player of the Year
Aodhan Quinn, Akron

2013 MAC Newcomer of the Year
Russell Cicerone, Buffalo

2013 "Gary V. Palmisano" Coach of the Year
John Scott, Hartwick

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Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,500 students, located in Oneonta, NY, in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick's expansive curriculum emphasizes an experiential approach to the liberal arts. Through personalized teaching, collaborative research, a distinctive January Term, a wide range of internships, and vast study-abroad opportunities, Hartwick ensures that students are prepared for not just their first jobs, but for the world ahead. A Three-Year Bachelor's Degree Program and strong financial aid and scholarship offerings keep a Hartwick education affordable.

Contact: Chris Gondek, Assistant AD for Athletic Communications
Phone: 607-431-4703