GILBERT, Ariz. — Five student-athletes were selected to represent their respective regions as the Longstreth/NFHCA Division I Regional Player of the Year.
Mid-Atlantic Region Player of the Year
Linnea Gonzales, University of Maryland, Sr., Midfielder (Bel Air, Maryland)
Gonzales, the 2018 Big Ten Conference Player of the Year, has been named the Longstreth/NFHCA Mid-Atlantic Region Player of the Year after a stellar season with the University of Maryland Terrapins, runners-up in the NCAA Division I National Championship. Gonzales finished her senior season leading the Terps in goals (14) and points (33) — she was named the 2018 Big Ten Tournament Most Outstanding Player, was named to the All-Big Ten Tournament Team and was a unanimous selection for All-Big Ten First Team honors. As one of this year's captains, Gonzales led the Terps to a share of the Big Ten Regular-Season Championship and a Big Ten Tournament Championship — she was named to the Longstreth/NFHCA Mid-Atlantic Region First Team earlier this week.
Mideast Region Player of the Year
Cecile Pieper, University of Connecticut, Gr., Defender (Mannheim, Germany)
Pieper, the 2018 BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year, has been named the Longstreth/NFHCA Northeast Region Player of the Year after a standout season for the University of Connecticut, this year's BIG EAST Regular-Season and Tournament champions. The unanimous All-BIG EAST First Team selection led the Huskies' defense which recorded seven shutouts this season, allowing only 1.33 goals per game — Pieper recorded 22 goals and 11 assists this season, contributing to the Huskies' offense as well. In addition to being named to the BIG EAST All-Tournament Team and the BIG EAST Tournament Most Outstanding Player, Pieper was also selected to the Longstreth/NFHCA Mideast Region First Team earlier this week.
Northeast Region Player of the Year
Ally Hammel, Boston University, Sr., Defender (Duxbury, Massachusetts)
Hammel, the two-time Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year (2017, 2018), repeats as the Longstreth/NFHCA Northeast Region Player of the Year. During the Terriers' 2018 campaign, the senior captain led a staunch defensive unit that helped propel Boston University to their fourth Patriot League Tournament Championship. This year, Hammel was recognized as the Patriot League Tournament Most Valuable Player, was an All-Tournament Team selection and a unanimous selection to the All-Patriot League First Team. Earlier this week, she was also selected to the Longstreth/NFHCA Northeast Region First Team.
South Region Player of the Year
Ashley Hoffman, University of North Carolina, Sr., Defender (Mohnton, Pennsylvania)
Hoffman, the 2018 Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Defensive Player of the Year, has been named the Longstreth/NFHCA South Region Player of the Year after an exceptional season leading the University of North Carolina Tar Heels, the 2018 NCAA National Champions. Hoffman's senior season culminated with perfect 23-0 record and NCAA Championship MVP accolades. Hoffman was also named the ACC Tournament MVP, an All-ACC First Team selection and a Longstreth/NFHCA South Region First Team selection. She finished her season with a career-high 12 goals and 31 points.
West Region Player of the Year
Paula Portugal, Miami University, Sr., Midfielder (Madrid, Spain)
Portugal, the 2018 Mid-American Conference (MAC) Offensive Player of the Year, has been named the Longstreth/NFHCA West Region Player of the Year. Portugal led the Miami University Redhawks to a MAC Regular-Season and Tournament Championship with 24 goals and four assists this season. She finished the 2018 campaign ranked seventh nationally in goals per game and eleventh in points per game — she topped the MAC's goals, goals per game, points and points per game categories as well. Portugal was named to the MAC's All-Conference First Team and earlier this week was named to the Longstreth/NFHCA West Region First-Team.
The Longstreth/NFHCA Division I Regional Player of the Year awards is the second in a list of postseason awards to come from the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) over the next several weeks. Next to be announced are the Longstreth/NFHCA All-American teams (December 4) and the Longstreth/NFHCA National Collegiate Player of the Year (December 10).