Goalkeeper Luka Gavran recorded 12 shutouts for the Red Storm. (Photo courtesy of St. John’s)
QUEENS, N.Y. – After leading the St. John’s University men to a third-place finish in the Big East and the 22nd NCAA Tournament appearance, three players received All-East Region honors from United Soccer Coaches on Tuesday.
Luka Gavran earned a spot on the first team, Lucas Bartlett secured a place on the second team and Brandon Knapp garnered third team honors.
They played a role in helping the Red Storm solidify a reputation as one of the nation’s top defensive units. Through games played in the NCAA Division I quarterfinals, St. John’s ranks sixth nationally in team goals-against average (0.63) and first in shutout percentage (0.60).
Gavran became the third player in program history to be named goalkeeper of the Yyar, earning the award after going 11-6-3 with a 0.57 goals against average and a .844 save percentage, the former of which ranks third nationally and the latter of which leads Division I. Gavran’s 12 shutouts were also the highest total in the NCAA and are tied for third on the program’s single-season record list. Gavran surrendered no more than two goals in a game this season and allowed multiple goals just three times, two of which came against nationally ranked foes (No. 6 Clemson and No. 1 Oregon State).
Bartlett needed only one season with the Johnnies to make his mark. A graduate transfer from Drake University, Bartlett earned selection to the All-Big East first team after starting all 20 games at center back and helping the Red Storm post the conference’s top GAA and highest shutout total. Bartlett was also one of the team’s top offensive producers, scoring five goals, three of which were game-winners, and dishing out three assists.
Also a selection on the Big East first team, Knapp played a variety of roles in his fourth year with the program. The three-time all-conference honoree spent time at forward, midfield and on the back line, helping the Red Storm record 12 shutouts while posting a team-high 16 points. He scored five goals, four of which were game-winners, and finished one off the conference lead with six assists. The Abingdon, Md., native scored the game-winner for the Red Storm in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.