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Nov 4, 2003

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            DALLAS - When the fifth-ranked University of Colorado soccer team opens Big 12 Tournament play as the No. 1 seed on Thursday, they will do so with Big 12 Coach of the Year Bill Hempen, Player of the Year Fran Munnelly and Rookie of the Year Katie Griffin as the league office announced its annual postseason awards Tuesday.


            It is just the second time in the history of the eight-year championship that one school has swept all three awards, first since the 1997 season, but first for sole possession as A&M shared coach of the year honors that year.


            "The individual honors are great for our program," said Hempen.  "The fact that we only had one player named to the first team shows that this season is not based around one player, but it's truly a team that plays very well together."


            Just a year after orchestrating the biggest single-season turnaround in school and league history, Hempen has led the Buffs to a 15-2-1 overall record, 8-1-1 league slate, their first conference title and a No. 5 national ranking entering the postseason.  It is his fourth career league coach of the year honor as he was the ACC Coach of the Year following the 1992, '94 and '97 seasons at Duke.


For the second straight year, the league's player of the year was the rookie of the year the previous season, as Munnelly has followed in the steps of Texas' Kelly Wilson.  Munnelly has 19 points on the season off six goals and seven assists and has four gamewinning scores.


Katie Griffin is the third freshman in as many seasons to lead the Buffs in scoring as the first year player has a single season school record 10 goals, three assists and CU single season best 23 points and team-leading five gamewinners.


            In addition to the individual awards, nine Buffs were named to three All-Big 12 teams.  For the second straight year, Fran Munnelly was named to the league's first-team, while defenders Tricia Regan and Laura Munnelly and forward Katie Griffin were tabbed to the second team.  Colorado dominated the all-newcomer team with Griffin, Munnelly, goalkeeper Jessica Keller (school record 14 wins, school record 9 shutouts and 0.51 gaa), midfielder Maddy Minnis (10 points) and forward Kathryn Grandinetti (single season school record nine assists) making the list.


            It is also the first time in the history of Big 12 soccer that siblings have been named to the all-conference soccer teams.



First Team

GK       Meghan Miller, Kansas

GK       Kati Jo Spisak, Texas A&M

D         Amanda Burke, Texas A&M

D         Jenna Cooper, Nebraska

D         Lauren Colwell, Oklahoma State

MF       Fran Munnelly, Colorado

MF       Kristen Strutz, Texas A&M

MF       Laura Probst, Texas A&M

F            Caroline Smith, Kansas

F          Kelly McDonald, Texas

F          Kelly Wilson, Texas


Second Team

GK       Kathrin Lehmann, Okalhoma State

D         Tricia Regan, Colorado

D         Laura Munnelly, Colorado

D         Holly Gault, Kansas

D         Erin Young, Oklahoma

MF       Lauren McIver, Oklahoma

MF            Adriane Radtke, Oklahoma State

MF       Tiffany Bosher, Baylor

F          Katie Griffin, Colorado

F            Melissa Peabody, Missouri

F          Emma Smith, Texas A&M


All-Newcomer Team

GK       Kathrin Lehmann, Oklahoma State

GK            Jessica Keller, Colorado

D         Laura Munnelly, Colorado

D         Linda Pierson, Texas A&M

D         Holly Gault, Kansas

MF       Nikki Thaden, Texas

MF       Maddy Minnis, Colorado

MF            Adriane Radtke, Oklahoma State

MF       Carrie Schmit, Texas

F          Katie Griffin, Colorado

F          Jessie Bruch, Nebraska

F            Kathryn Grandinetti, Colorado

F          Kate Kirwan, Iowa State

F          Kat Krambeer, Texas A&M


Player of the Year    Fran Munnelly, Colorado

Rookie of the Year    Katie Griffin, Colorado

Coach of the Year    Bill Hempen, Colorado