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Ooks Players of the Year

NAIT Players of the Year Awards

By Zachary Flynn

Matthew Zima Captain Men's Soccer team NAIT Athletics
Photo provided by NAIT Athletics

Matt Zima

ACAC North Men’s Soccer Player of the Year

Zima was named the ACAC North Men’s Soccer Player of the Year following a season where he led the league in scoring, finding the back of the net 20 times over 12 games.

“It felt like all the hard work I put in the offseason and during the season panned out. It’s a short season and you’ve got to take care of your body and really put in the effort,” said Zima, who credits his entire team for the award.

“When you get the award, you know it’s a team award, it’s just given to an individual person,” said Zima. “I’m not going to get that award unless I’ve got a good team behind me and it’s what I had this year. It’s all about hard work.”

Zima didn’t stumble upon this award accidentally. He started setting goals before his team’s first game.

“Before every season I always talk to friends and say ‘I’m going for top goalscorer, there’s no doubt about it,’’ said Zima.

Zima, only a third-year player, plans on coming back for the next two seasons and making full use of the five years of eligibility he has in the ACAC.

Marissa Webb Captain of Women's Soccer team NAIT Athletics
Photo provided by NAIT Athletics

Marissa Webb

ACAC Women’s Soccer Player of the Year

After five years in the ACAC and three all-conference team appearances, Marissa Webb was named the ACAC Women’s Soccer Player of the Year.

Webb finished the season tied for first place in scoring with 19 goals in 12 games, and led the league in points, with 43 total. She contributed to over 55% of her team’s scoring in the regular season.

Despite these statistics, she was slightly surprised to be named player of the year.

“I knew I did pretty well this year but I didn’t think I would get player of the year,” said Webb.

“It feels good to have it pay off after five years.”

Webb says her NAIT coach of five years, Carole Holt, played a key role in shaping her to be the player she is today.

“Carole is super supportive and every year she’s told me that she knew what I was capable of,” said Webb.

“In my fifth year, it was all the things I’ve done over those five years have paid off.”

While her ACAC soccer career is coming to a close following their national tournament, Webb still plans to play for local club teams as she works.

Both Zima and Webb were also named to their respective All-Canadian teams on Wednesday Nov. 6 at the CCAA soccer awards banquet.

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