Acadiana All-Metro Girls Soccer team: St. Thomas More’s Katherine Whitman named Player of the Year _lowres

Advocate staff photo by LESLIE WESTBROOK -- St. Thomas More soccer player Katherine Whitman is pictured Tuesday, April 12, 2016, at the school in Lafayette, La.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Katherine Whitman

Katherine Whitman used her athletic talents, and more importantly, her leadership to help guide the Cougars to another successful season on the pitch.

The senior midfielder-forward, who is committed to play for St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas, had 14 goals and nine assists this season as St. Thomas More went 21-7-2 before losing on penalty kicks to Lakeshore in the Division II state semifinals.

Whitman was named district MVP and earned first-team all-state honors for the second time.

“Kat could always be counted on to open up games for us with her ability to create chances for herself and her teammates,” STM coach Daniel Underwood said.

“We traveled to Shreveport to play highly-ranked Loyola Prep and were down 2-0 with 30 minutes left. Kat willed the team to a victory when she scored two goals within a 10-minute span and we won 3-2.”

Underwood said what makes Whitman stand out is that she is a dynamic athlete who also possesses plenty of humility.

“Kat’s leadership was critical to our team’s success. She led by example by always going above and beyond at practice to really motivate and push her teammates during competition,” Underwood said. “However, off the field she always has a bright and beautiful smile and is one of the most kind, down to Earth, and sweetest girls you will ever meet.”

Raymond Partsch III

First team

Arieal Alexander/Lafayette High

The senior forward was named district Offensive MVP while serving as the leading scorer for the Lions, who reached the second round of the Division I playoffs.

Mackenzie Marze/Teurlings Catholic

The junior midfielder-striker helped lead Lady Rebels to Division III quarterfinals as she scored more than 20 goals to earn District Overall MVP and first-team all-state honors.

Danielle Heim/Carencro

The junior goalie had 54 saves for the Lady Bears as she earned district Defensive MVP honors, all-state honors and helped team to Division II quarterfinals.

Hailey Zaunbrecher/St. Thomas More

The senior forward-scoring sensation led the Cougars with 17 goals and added 11 assists.

Caroline LeBlanc/Catholic-New Iberia

The junior forward led the team’s scoring attack with 21 goals and seven assists as Panthers reached Division IV semifinals.

Madisyn Girouard/New Iberia

The sophomore sensation helped lead the Lady Yellow Jackets to the Division I playoffs as she scored 10 goals with 18 assists.

Anaice-Kay Hackett/Teurlings Catholic

The junior defender helped control the back as the Lady Rebels gave up only 34 goals in 28 contests.

Amelia Thibodeaux/St. Thomas More

The senior center back earned first-team all-district and all-state honors manning the midfield. Also had five goals and two assists.

Rammie Noel/Acadiana

The Lady Rams freshman attacking midfielder had 14 goals as team advanced to the Division I quarterfinals.

Sarah Beadle/Ascension Episcopal

The junior midfielder had 33 goals with 12 assists while being named district MVP and earning first-team all-state honors.

COACH OF THE YEAR

Stefan Norris/

Catholic High-New Iberia

Norris led the Panthers back to state semifinals for the first time in two seasons. Catholic-NI went 19-4-3, won the district championship and earned the No. 1 seed in the Division IV playoffs. Catholic-NI came up short of winning a state title, losing 1-0 to Newman in the semifinals.

Caroline Mitchell/Lafayette High

The senior defender earned District Defensive MVP honors after anchoring the Lady Lions defense.

Allie Vines/Catholic-New Iberia

The junior led the team’s defense which gave up only 11 goals in 27 games. Also scored nine goals and seven assists.

Maddie Moreau/St. Thomas More

The Cougars young star received first-team all-district and first-team freshmen all-state honors after scoring 16 goals and 12 assists.

Jolie Cary/Acadiana

The sophomore goalie earned first team all-district honors after posting 15 shutouts this season for the Lady Rams.

Quintrelle Jones/

Catholic-New Iberia

Helped lead team to Division IV semifinals as she posted 17 shutouts in 27 starts this season.