LA JOLLA, Calif. - For the second year in a row, two University of California San Diego men's soccer student-athletes earned College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District 8 First Team distinction Thursday for the NCAA Division II. They are fifth-year Tritons Malek Bashti and Nolan Mac.
This marks Bashti's second straight award, with Mac a first-time honoree. Both Tritons advance to the CoSIDA Academic All-America® ballot, to be selected next month. Twelve players made it onto the CoSIDA Academic All-District 8 First Team, with Bashti one of three forwards and Mac one of four defenders on the squad.
Bashti has maintained a 3.81 grade-point average in microbiology. Mac completed his undergraduate studies already at UC San Diego last June, in physiology and neuroscience with a 3.40 GPA. He is a first-year graduate student within the UC San Diego Division of Biological Sciences.
The co-captains guided UC San Diego to a fifth consecutive postseason appearance, 10-2-5 overall record and third-place finish in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) standings. The Tritons were eliminated, 1-0, at home in the first round of the CCAA Tournament on Oct. 31, and left out of the 38-team NCAA Division II Championship field when that announcement was made on Monday.
Bashti, a redshirt senior from Cupertino (Monta Vista HS), started 14 of 15 matches played in his final season of college soccer, collecting two goals and three assists. His first goal of 2017 was the 86th-minute game-winner from the penalty spot at then-19th-ranked rival Cal State Dominguez Hills on Sept. 22.
Mac (Laguna Hills/Laguna Hills HS) was the starting left back on a defense that ranks first in the CCAA, third in the West Region and 19th nationally in Division II with a 0.761 team goals-against average. He started all 16 matches after missing the season opener due to injury, and in addition to his defensive contributions, produced the first three goals and first assist of his college career this season.
Mac was named to the All-CCAA Second Team late last week, while Bashti garnered All-CCAA honorable mention. Both players earned honorable mentions a year ago.
The CoSIDA Academic All-District teams recognize the nation's top student-athletes for their combined performances athletically and in the classroom.