Stanford junior center back Tomas Hilliard-Arce was named one of 15 semifinalists for the 2016 MAC Hermann Trophy it was announced Tuesday.
The MAC Hermann Trophy is the highest individual intercollegiate award administered by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and presented annually at the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis. This year's trophy presentation and banquet will take place Friday, Jan. 6.
Three from the group of 15 will be named finalists in mid-December following a vote of NCAA Division I coaches.
The MAC Hermann Trophy, the most coveted individual honor in NCAA Division I soccer, has been awarded annually since 1967. Last year, two-time Stanford All-American and 2016 Major League Soccer Rookie of the Year Jordan Morris became the first Cardinal men's player to win the honor.
Stanford, one of just four schools in the history of the award to have both men's and women's winners, is also the only one with semifinalists on both lists this year. Maddie Bauer and Andi Sullivan are up for the Hermann Trophy on the women's side.
Hilliard-Arce, who was not on the 28-person preseason men's watch list, has played himself into contention with a sterling junior campaign. The 2016 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year is also a set-piece threat and is second on the team in goals (4) and fourth in points (10).
Also a 2016 All-Pac-12 first team selection, Hilliard-Arce anchors a defense which is 12th in the nation in goals against average (0.65) and 12th in shutout percentage (0.50). He has started each of his 61 career appearances and in his three years on The Farm the program has a goals against average of 0.70.
The Cardinal is the nation's second winningest program by percentage since he arrived on campus with an overall record of 44-8-10 (.790).
Also on the 2015 Top Drawer Soccer Best XI Second Team and the 2015 All-Pac-12 Second Team, Hilliard-Arce has nine career goals, two assists and 20 points. In August of 2015, he was called by the U.S. Under-23 Men's National Team for the first College Identification Training Camp.
As a freshman he landed on the 2014 NSCAA/Continental Tire All-Far West Region Third Team, the All-Pac-12 second team, the Top Drawer Soccer Best XI Freshman First Team, the Soccer America Men's All-Freshman Second Team and was a College Soccer News Second Team Freshman All-American.
Stanford knocked off Virginia at Cagan Stadium on Sunday night in double overtime, 1-0, to advance to an NCAA quarterfinal for the second consecutive season. The fifth-seeded Cardinal will play at fourth-seeded Louisville on Saturday, Dec. 3 at 4 p.m. PT.
Behind Hilliard-Arce and a stout defense, Stanford has posted shutouts in four straight postseason matches and hasn't allowed a postseason goal in the last 422:17.