Indiana senior midfielder Tanner Thompson was named Big Ten Midfielder of the Year on Friday, his second straight such award, headlining five Hoosiers earning conference accolades.
Joining Thompson on the All-Big Ten first team was junior defender Grant Lillard, while senior forward Richard Ballard and sophomore defender Andrew Gutman were named to the second team. Senior defender Derek Creviston was IU’s Sportsmanship Award honoree.
“These individual awards are a reflection of the hard work and success we have had as a team throughout the regular season,” Indiana coach Todd Yeagley said. “I am very happy to see Richard and Derek honored this year for all the work they have put into our program over the past five years. They have been great leaders and teammates and both were key members of our 2012 national championship team.
“Grant and Andrew have been instrumental in helping our team be among the nation’s best defensively. Tanner has had a wonderful career at IU, and he is playing at his best as we enter the championship phase of the year. Tanner will leave IU as one of our all-time greats in his position. All of our 2016 honorees represent IU Soccer and Indiana University with distinction.”
Thompson has scored a career-high eight goals this season to go with two assists and leads the Hoosiers with 18 points. Among those goals are four game-winners, including last Sunday’s goal in the 86th minute to lift IU over Michigan State and into second place in the Big Ten.
He is one of just four unanimous selections to the first team and is the first two-time winner of the Midfielder of the Year in conference history.
Lillard and Gutman have helped Indiana record a Big Ten-best nine shutouts this season. Lillard has scored two goals to go with one assist in earning first team honors for the second straight year, while Gutman has a goal and two assists to make the second team for a second consecutive year.
Ballard earned the first Big Ten honors of his career. He has four goals and an assist in the best scoring season of his career.
No. 8 Indiana hosts Northwestern at 1 p.m. Sunday in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals at Armstrong Stadium.