Bell named Offensive and Player of the Year; Duggan dubbed Defensive Player of the Year; Pertotta earned Goalkeeper of the Year

The No. 4 Marshall University Men’s Soccer team swept the major 2023 Sun Belt Conference Postseason Awards. Matthew Bell earned SBC Offensive and Player of the Year honors, Morris Duggan garnered SBC Defensive Player of the Year and Gabriel Perrotta was named SBC Goalkeeper of the Year, as announced by the league office on Friday. 

All three honorees also earned first-team all-SBC honors while Taimu Okiyoshi was named as a second-team selection.  

Bell followed up a 2022 season where he was named SBC Freshman of the Year with a stellar sophomore campaign. The Kingston, Jamaica, native was named to the MAC Hermann Watch List and has 10 assists – third most in the nation – and eight goals for an SBC-leading 26 points – 16th most in the country. Bell’s eight goals sit third in the conference, including three game-winners, which tied for second in the SBC.  

Bell was the only two-time SBC Offensive Player of Week award winner as he averaged 1.2 goal contributions per game with four multi-goal contribution efforts in 15 matches. That included a hat trick against Oakland (Aug. 26) and a pair of three-assist matches at Pitt (Sept. 5) and against Coastal Carolina (Oct. 13). 

On the defensive side, Duggan captained a defense that had the most shutouts (9), allowed the fewest goals (12), fewest shots on goal (50) and had the best goals against average (.750) in the SBC. The senior played 1,062 minutes on the backline, tallied a pair of goals with four shots on target during the season with one at Georgia Southern (Oct. 1) and one at then-No. 5 WVU (Oct. 18). The German defender also registered a pair of assists with one each against High Point (Sept. 8) and Coastal Carolina (Oct. 13). 

Perrotta was a stalwart in goal for Marshall during the 2023 season. After transferring to The Herd from UNCW, the graduate student started all 16 of Marshall’s games in goal, played all but six minutes and led the SBC with 8.5 shutouts and 14 wins, which established a Marshall program record as an individual and a team record for regular season victories. Four of the Paraguayan’s shutouts came in SBC play against then-No. 3 UCF (Sept. 23), Georgia State (Oct. 7), at ODU (Oct. 27) and South Carolina (Oct. 31). Perrotta’s .753 goals against average leads the SBC and sits in the top-20 nationally while his .755 save percentage ranks fourth in the SBC. 

Okiyoshi, a captain of the 2023 squad, not only started all 16 matches for The Herd, but played the most minutes of any field player on the team at 1,314. The native of Kobe, Japan, tallied a goal and an assist with seven shots, including two on target. The midfielder’s goal was a screamer from outside the 18-yard box in a win at then-No. 9 James Madison (Sept. 16) with his assist coming in a win against Cleveland State (Sept. 12). 

The Herd, ranked No. 4 in the United Soccer Coaches poll, is set to begin the 2023 SBC Men’s Soccer Tournament as the No. 1 seed against the eighth-seeded Old Dominion Monarchs at 3 p.m. on Sunday at Hoops Family Field. Buy your tickets now by clicking here!  

2023 Sun Belt Men’s Soccer Postseason Awards

Player of the Year | Offensive Player of the Year 
Matthew Bell, Marshall 

Defensive Player of the Year 
Morris Duggan, Marshall 

Goalkeeper of the Year 
Gabriel Perrotta, Marshall 

Freshman of the Year 
Saku Heiskanen, UCF 

Newcomer of the Year 
Clarence Awoudor, UCF 

Coach of the Year 
Scott Calabrese, UCF 

First Team All-Conference 
F – Matthew Bell, Marshall 
F – Marcus Caldeira, West Virginia 
F – Lucca Dourado, UCF 
F – Yutaro Tsukada, West Virginia 
M – Ethan Dekel Daks, South Carolina 
M – Clay Obara, James Madison 
M – Simon Carlson, Georgia State 
D – Zane Bubb, UCF 
D – Morris Duggan, Marshall 
D – Luca Nikolai, James Madison 
GK – Gabriel Perrotta, Marshall 

Second Team All-Conference 
F – Saku Heiskanen, UCF 
F – Adam Luckhurst, South Carolina 
F – Rodrigo Robles, James Madison 
M – Taimu Okiyoshi, Marshall 
M – AJ Seals, UCF 
M – Kevin Larsson, James Madison 
M – Luke McCormick, West Virginia 
D – Anderson Rosa, UCF 
D – Frederik Jorgensen, West Virginia 
D – Max Miller, Kentucky 
GK – Jackson Lee, West Virginia 

To donate to the Championship Fund for Marshall men’s soccer, please click HERE. All proceeds go directly to the Marshall men’s soccer team.

For all the latest information about Marshall men’s soccer, follow @herdmsoccer on Twitter and Instagram.

**Press release from Marshall University – HERDZONE – 11/3/2023 4:00:00 PM | Men’s Soccer

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