Photo by The Villages SC
Araujo, Henrique and FC Miami City's Mohamed Kourouma are the three forwards in the All-Southern Conference Team, while The Villages’ Paulo Pita was voted the best goalkeeper in the conference.
Six teams are represented in the All-Southern Conference Team, including two players from Sockers FC, which recently won the Southern Conference Championship.
All-Conference honors are based solely off regular season performance, and players were voted on by teams within their respective conference.
PDL All-Southern Conference Team
GK – Paulo Pita, The Villages SC: Pita helped lead The Villages to a Southeast title, making 26 saves in 12 appearances while recording a 0.75 goals against average. The 22-year-old goalkeeper earned six shutouts during the regular season.
D – Kimathi Kaumbutho, SW Florida Adrenaline: Kaumbutho was instrumental for the Adrenaline back line during the 2016 regular season. He played 11 games for the Adrenaline during the campaign, helping the club earn three shutouts.
D – Fernando Machado, Midland/Odessa Sockers FC: Oklahoma Wesleyan University’s Machado played all 14 games for Sockers FC during the season, helping the Texas club record six shutouts while also scoring two goals. Sockers FC only conceded 14 goals during the regular season – the fewest among all Southern Conference teams.
D – Sebastian Pineda, OKC Energy U23: As a defender, Pineda scored two goals and provided one assist during the regular season. The 24-year-old was key in seeing the Energy U23 earn the Mid South regular season title.
D – Josh Taylor, OKC Energy U23: St. Edward's University’s Taylor, ranked sixth in the latest edition of the 2016 PDL Top Prospects list, scored three goals and provided two assists as a defender for the Energy U23. He played in all 14 games for the team, which only conceded 15 goals during the year.
M – Tosan Popo, SW Florida Adrenaline: The 23-year-old Popo played 10 games for the Adrenaline in 2016, scoring once while being active in the Adrenaline midfield.
M – Lucas Coutinho, South Florida Surf: Palm Beach Atlantic University’s Coutinho led the Surf in assists with five, and he also scored three goals during the season. Appearing in 13 games, Coutinho was the creator for a Surf side that finished second in the Southeast.
M – Noah Keats, OKC Energy U23: Keats led the Southern Conference in goals scored with 13, and he also provided three assists in his 14 appearances for the Energy U23 this season. Keats was the driving force behind the Energy U23 clinching the Mid South regular season title.
F – Carlos Araujo, The Villages SC: Araujo scored the second-most goals in the Southern Conference during the regular season. The forward netted 11 goals and provided four assists in 14 games played, and he also had a six-game goal-scoring streak during June and July.
F – Bruno Henrique, Midland/Odessa Sockers FC: Henrique led the Sockers in goals scored with seven during the season, playing 13 games en route to helping Sockers FC finish second in the Mid South.
F – Mohamed Kourouma, FC Miami City: Miami City finished the regular season with the third-most goals in the Southern Conference, and Kourouma had nine of the team’s 31. The forward played 13 games and also provided two assists for the club, which finished third in the Southeast.