Jan. 5, 2010

Notre Dame, Ind. – Two former Notre Dame men’s soccer players have been selected to the College Soccer News Team of the Decade (2000-09). Goalkeeper Chris Sawyer (2001-04) was named to the first team, while forward Joseph Lapira (2004-07) was a second-team pick.

Sawyer, a two-time first-team All-American, played in 73 games during his standout collegiate career and posted a 0.66 goals-against average. He was named the BIG EAST Goalkeeper of the Year in 2003 and 2004. Sawyer was a four-time all-league selection and helped the Fighting Irish capture the 2003 BIG EAST Championship.

Sawyer, a native of Highlands Ranch, Colo., was the only goalkeeper selected to the 12-man first team. The second and third teams featured 11 players each.

Lapira became Notre Dame’s first-ever recipient of the Missouri Athletic Club (M.A.C) Hermann Trophy as he took home the national player-of-the-year award in 2006 after leading all NCAA Division I men’s soccer players in goals (22) and total points (50). The Louisiana native copped first-team All-America honors during his junior and senior seasons. Lapira was named the 2006 BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year and received all-conference accolades three times.

For his career, Lapira played in 89 matches and tallied 105 points on 41 goals and 23 assists. His goal and point totals rank fifth in Notre Dame history. Lapira helped guide the Fighting Irish to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship in 2006 and 2007.