Blast's Wakefield top MISL rookie

Bowers named all-league for fifth time in career


April 24, 2003|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

The Major Indoor Soccer League's Rookie of the Year award has now gone hand in hand with the Blast, UMBC and the Baltimore area the past two seasons.

Yesterday, the league announced that midfielder P.J. Wakefield was an overwhelming choice by the media that covers the league, along with coaches and management. He succeeds teammate Billy Nelson for the honor. Both are former UMBC standouts.

Blast veteran defender Sean Bowers, a three-time league Defender of the Year, was named to the All-MISL first team for the fifth time in his nine-year career. He had 47 points and a team-high 84 blocks during the regular season and added four points and 14 blocks in the league champion Blast's five-game playoff run.

Wakefield, a Calvert Hall and UMBC grad, showed veteran poise in finishing third on the team in scoring with 62 regular-season points, adding 11 in the postseason. The Blast's first-round draft pick in the 2002 amateur draft was chosen as a replacement for the league's All-Star Game.

"It's been great. I got everything, all at once," Wakefield said. "To win it all was our first goal, and to also play in the All-Star Game and now to be named Rookie of the Year - an award you just get one chance at - it's incredible."

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