KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Junior forward Mario Pinto has capped his banner season for the Lincoln Memorial University men’s soccer team with a selection to the 2012 Daktronics NCAA Division II All-America First Team. Mario is the third All-America First Team selection in the history of the LMU men’s soccer program.
Pinto was also crowned with South Atlantic Conference Player of the Year and Daktronics Southeast Region Player of the Year laurels for his efforts this season.
Lincoln Memorial boasted the 18th-highest scoring offense in the nation and Pinto was the headliner of that unit, leading the Railsplitters in every offensive category this season en route to a 13-4-1 finish. Pinto tallied 21 goals, five assists, 47 points, 89 shots, 51 shots on goal and a .573 shot on goal percentage. Of his 21 scores this season, seven were game-winners. Pinto capped the 2012 season leading the South Atlantic Conference in goals, points and game-winning scores while ranking second in the league in shots and sixth in assists.
Pinto’s impact was not only felt in the South Atlantic Conference, as he ranked among the elite scorers nationally (NCAA Division II). He concluded the season ranked third in the nation in total goals (21), second in goals per game (1.17), second in points per game (2.61) and third in total points (47).
The 2012 campaign will be remembered as one of the most dominant offensive performances in the storied history of the Lincoln Memorial University men’s soccer program, as Pinto etched his name throughout the single-season record book in school history. He ranks second in single-season history in game-winning goals, third in shots per game (4.94), third in shots on goal (51), third in shots on goal per game (2.83), fourth in goals per game, sixth in points and sixth in goals.
Pinto notched four hat tricks this season to go along with two braces. He tallied seven points in three contests and recorded at least one point in 13 of the team’s 18 matches. He found the net in 11 matches with a streak of goals in seven straight games that stretched from Sept. 29 to Oct. 23.
Mario is also primed to join the ranks of the elite players in the history of the Railsplitters, as his name is a prominent feature in the career record book at LMU. Despite only playing two seasons for the ‘Splitters, Pinto ranks seventh all-time in school history with 34 career goals, while ranking third in points per game (2.17), third in goals per game (0.94) and ninth in points (78).
Pinto was an All-South Atlantic Conference First Team selection and a Daktronics All-Southeast Region honoree last season.
Pinto will be returning for his senior season next year, as he looks to lead the Railsplitters into the NCAA Tournament with their sights set on capturing a Southeast Region title and beyond.