Four Liberty Flames have been named to the 2017 Big South All-Conference team, as the Big South men's soccer awards were announced this morning by the conference office.
Midfielder Kevin Mendoza and forward Tresor Mbuyu were selected to the all-conference first team, while defender Alex Dominguez and midfielder Pepe Segarra garnered second team honors. For the second consecutive season, defender Nico Bellarde earned all-academic team selection.
For the third straight year, Mendoza has been voted to the all-conference team by the league's head coaches. The midfielder from Mexico City, Mexico was named to the first team for the second consecutive year after posting career highs for goals (nine) and points (22). He also has four assists.
Mendoza, the Flames' second-leading scorer, enters the weekend seventh in the Big South in goals and points. Five of his goals have come in Big South play. The junior also is tied for third in the conference with three game-winning goals. One of two Flames to start every match this season, Mendoza was named the 2017 Dayton Tournament MVP.
Mbuyu earned inclusion on the all-conference first team for the second consecutive season. The 2016 Big South Attacking Player of the Year as a sophomore, Mbuyu again leads the Flames in scoring and finished the regular season fifth in the Big South Conference in points (25) and goals (10). He also added five assists.
Mbuyu enters the weekend among the nation's top 20 players with a 1.56 points per game average. The junior forward from Charlotte, N.C., is currently fifth in points and goals and ranks seventh in assists in the Big South Conference.
In his senior season at Liberty, Dominguez receives his first all-conference team selection. After posting one career assist entering the 2017 season, the defender has set career-highs for points (six) and assists (four) in a season. He also scored the first goal of his career in Liberty's 2-1 victory at Presbyterian on Oct. 13.
The El Paso, Texas native has also been a part of defensive unit which has posted a 0.98 goals-against average and is tied for the conference lead with seven shutouts.
Just like Dominguez, Segarra garners his first all-conference team selection in his senior season. Along with Mendoza, the midfielder was one of only two Flames to start every match in 2017. Segarra has scored two goals and added two assists for six points.
Both of the Castellon, Spain native's goals have been game-winning markers, including one with 42 seconds remaining in a 1-0 win over Marshall on Oct. 17.
Bellarde, a junior defender, earns inclusion on the Big South All-Academic team for the second consecutive year. The Sao Paulo, Brazil native holds a 3.26 GPA in digital media video and serves as a team captain.
For a full list of the All-Big South selections, click here.
Liberty, the No. 4 seed for the Big South Men's Soccer Championship, will host No. 5 seed Gardner-Webb in the quarterfinals at Osborne Stadium on Sunday. Match time is scheduled for 2 p.m.