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Thursday, November 9, 2006


MEDFORD -- Emblematic of their strong team play, the second-place Tufts University women's soccer team had only two players recognized among 24 individuals selected for the 2006 New England Small College Athletic Conference All-Conference teams announced today.

Junior midfielder Martha Furtek (East Falmouth, MA/Falmouth) was voted to the First Team by the conference's coaches and junior defender Annie Benedict (Millburn, NJ/Millburn) was named to the Second Team.

Head coach Martha Whiting's Jumbos finished the regular season second in NESCAC with a 6-1-2 record, losing only to Middlebury College. Tufts was 9-4-1 overall, winning nine of their last 11 games after an 0-2-2 start. The Jumbos' season was upended in the first round of the conference tournament when they lost to Bates, 2-1, in overtime.

Furtek receives All-NESCAC honors for the third straight season. She was a Second Team selection in 2004 as a freshman and made the First Team last year. With three goals and six assists for 12 points this fall, she led Tufts in assists and is third in the conference with a 0.40 per game average. The heart of the team at midfield, she's an outstanding athlete who never comes off the field. She led the Jumbos by a wide margin with 56 shots.

Benedict, the centerback, was the team's most consistent defender this fall. A great one-on-one defender, she helped the team allow only 18 goals in 1,387 minutes for a 1.17 goals against average that ranked the team fifth in NESCAC this year. The squad also recorded six shutouts, including four against NESCAC teams. The Jumbos earned a 0.98 goals against mark in nine conference contests. Ironically, Annie's older sister Catherine joined Furtek as an All-NESCAC selection in 2004.