Campoli earns U-Sports men’s soccer player of the year honours for Oshawa’s Ontario Tech

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Published November 10, 2022 at 4:50 pm

Ontario Tech’s midfield maestro and scoring star Chris Campoli has been named U Sports Player of the Year in men’s soccer.

Campoli, who hails from Woodbridge, is the first Ridgeback to capture the Joe Johnson Memorial Trophy. In fact, he is the first Ontario Tech athlete in any sport to be named a national player of the year.

The Ridgebacks enjoyed a stellar season this year, peaking at #5 in the nation before the 11-1 team was upset by Nipissing on penalty kicks in the Ontario quarter-finals.

The third-year finance student led the Ridgebacks and the OUA offence this season with 13 goals in 11 matches, good for second in the country. Campoli also led the OUA in assists with six, while also finishing second in Canada.

Other national award winners announced during the All-Canadian Banquet held in Kamloops, B.C., were UBC defender Eric Lajeunesse, who won the Lou Bilek Award for rookie of the year; Deven Doodnath of Nipissing, who won the Student-Athlete Community Service Award; and UNBC head coach Steve Simonson, who captured Fox40 coach of the year honours.

Campoli was earlier named as the OUA East MVP, a first for the Ontario Tech soccer program, and he was named a first team OUA all-star, a feat he previously achieved in 2019. Campoli was Ontario Tech’s athlete of the year in 2021-22.

In 2021 and 2022, he was selected in the first round of the CPL-U SPORTS Draft. Campoli went fourth overall in 2021, followed by going third overall in 2022 to the Halifax Wanderers.

Since joining the Ridgebacks in 2019 he has scored 31 goals over 35 matches, making him the program’s all-time scoring leader.

“Chris has demonstrated tremendous passion, hard work and excellence on the field. He sets the standard for our players and assists them in being better on and off the field,” said Ridgebacks head coach Ramin Mohammadi, himself a national finalist this year for the Fox40 coach of the year award. “Chris regularly communicates with the coaching staff and seeks advice on how to improve. The way he strives for excellence is admirable. It is a privilege to coach a player of this calibre.”

UNB forward Keji Adeniyi, Montreal midfielder Quentin Paumier and UNBC forward Michael Henman were the other finalists for the award.

The all-Canadian teams were also announced this week. Campoli was joined on the first team by teammate Jacob Begley, a senior centre back and kinesiology student from Markham who has earned plenty of accolades on his own, and MVP finalists Paumier, Henman and Adeniyi. Also on the all-star team were Sterling Kerr and Caden Rogozinski (Mount Royal), Lewis Dye (STFX), Guillaume Pianelli Balisoni (UQTR), Thomas Gardner (UBC) and Soji Olatoye (York). Rogozinski and Olatoye both won their second straight all-Canadian nods, while Gardner returns to the dream team for the first time since 2018.

Guelph midfielder Jack Sears, who is from Ajax, made the All-Canadian second team.

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