FAIRFIELD, CT - Iona College men's soccer head coach Fernando Barboto has been named the 2009 MAAC Coach of the Year. Barboto's Gaels won the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference regular season championship for the first time in school history and set a new program record with eight conference wins, eclipsing the previous mark of six set in 1998.
Iona had eight players named to the All-MAAC Teams, led by First Team selection Giovanni Destasio. Destasio, a senior forward, led the MAAC in goals, goals per game, and points per game this year and was third in total points and fourth in shots per game. He was first on the Iona squad in both goals (10) and points (21) for the second consecutive season and recorded a career-high five game-winning goals.
Representing the Gaels on the All-MAAC Second Team were junior defender Roberto Hernandez-Raaen, freshman midfielder Alvaro Torrecilla, senior midfielder Fernando Liserra, junior midfielder Mario Rios, freshman forward Mario Di Miceli, and senior goalkeeper Nils Binstock.
Torrecilla and Di Miceli were also named to the All-Rookie Team, along with first-year defender Robbie Krohmer.
Iona, together with Marist, led all schools with ten members named to the 2009 MAAC All-Academic Team. Those earning the distinction were seniors Mario Aceto, Binstock, Aleksander Haxhari, and Alexander Paszek; juniors Scott Aceto, Hernandez-Raaen, Shane Jeffery, Rios, and Keith Wood; and sophomore Adam Rohan.
The No. 1 seeded Gaels take on No. 4 Niagara in the semifinals of the MAAC Championship at 7:00 pm on Friday. The team that advances will play for the Championship in the final to be held at noon on Sunday.