Dec. 10, 2010
BERKELEY - California men's soccer players A.J. Soares, David Bingham and Davis Paul earned spots on the 2010 National Soccer Coaches Association of America/Performance Subaru Men's NCAA Division I All-America teams, the NSCAA announced prior to the start of the NCAA Men's College Cup semifinal games on Friday. This ties the school record for most players on the NSCAA All-America teams; three Golden Bears also claimed NSCAA All-America honors in 1958 and in 1964.
Soares, a senior defender and one of three co-captains for the Bears, earned first-team recognition, Bingham, a junior goalkeeper, is on the second team and Paul, a senior forward, is on the third team. All three were All-America candidates by virtue of gaining 2010 NSCAA Far West Region first-team status. This week, Paul and Soares also earned invitations to the 2011 MLS Combine.
"Three All-Americans is quite an accomplishment for A.J., David and Davis," Cal head coach Kevin Grimes said. "It is also the byproduct of great teammates who pushed each other every day in training. We are seeing the fruits of our labor in both the MLS Combine selections as well as the All-America recognition. This has been an historic week for Cal soccer. We couldn't be more proud of this team and its season."
The three Bears were key components of Cal's quarterfinal run to the NCAA Tournament and their third Pac-10 championship in 2010.
The Pac-10 Player of the Year and an All-Pac-10 first-team selection in 2010, Soares is also a Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy semifinalist. Under his guidance, the Cal defense had a sterling performance in front of Bingham, who allowed just 17 goals and posted eight shutouts in 2010. The central defender was also a key contributor on the offensive end this season, posting career highs in points (11) and goals (5). A native of Solana Beach, Calif., Soares scored the game-winning goal in a 3-0 rout of San Diego State on Oct. 15 in Berkeley. He also earned two Pac-10 Player of the Week honors this year.
Bingham, the only Cal goalkeeper to play this season, was amazing in the nets. A 2010 first-team All-Pac-10 member, Bingham posted a 0.77 goals-against average (ranking 25th nationally) and a .884 save percentage (3rd nationally) while playing 1,978 minutes and 40 seconds. Bingham blanked his first opponent in Cal's second game of the year - a 0-0 double overtime tie on Sept. 5 at Notre Dame. He made nine saves against the Irish, who posted the most shots (28) of any Cal opponent this season. A product of Pleasanton, Calif., in the San Francisco Bay Area, Bingham collected his last shutout in the NCAA Tournament's third round, when he made three saves to blank Brown, 2-0, on Nov. 28 in Berkeley.
The 2010 Bears set the school's single-season assist record of 49 thanks in large part to Paul, another All-Pac-10 first-team pick this season. The Upland, Calif., forward added to his Cal single-season assist record (14, ranking 4th nationally) when he set up sophomore forward John Fitzpatrick for the eventual game-winning goal against Brown in the NCAA Tournament's third round on Nov. 28 in Berkeley. Paul ranks fourth on Cal's career assist list with 21 and scored 30 points (13th nationally) in his final season, tying Carr for sixth place on the school's single-season points list. Paul led the Bears with career highs in goals (8), assists, points and game-winning goals (5) in 2010.
Perhaps his biggest goal of the season came in the postseason win over UCSB, in which Paul scored with one second remaining in the first overtime to give Cal a sudden victory. During the regular season, he led the Pac-10 in points (27), assists (13) and gamewinners (4). Like Soares, he claimed two Pac-10 Player of the Week honors.