01 Oct Dolabella and Dias Named Senior CLASS Award Candidates
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Marshall men’s soccer seniors Pedro Dolabella and Vitor Dias were named Senior CLASS Award Candidates, the organization announced.
Sixty student-athletes were chosen among all of the seniors across Division I. Dolabella and Dias are the only ones from Conference USA.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior or graduate-student and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character, and competition.
“Pedro (Dolabella) and Vitor (Dias) are two guys who conduct themselves with class,” Herd head coach Chris Grassie said. “Their impact on our program has been absolutely immense. They will both go down as legends here. They’re also great role models in the classroom. I hope they’ve set the standard for all future Marshall players.”
Both Dolabella and Dias have been very instrumental in the rise of the Marshall men’s soccer program. From getting ranked into the top 25, to back-to-back Conference USA Titles, and then National Champions.
Dolabella was selected as a candidate in the spring, however since he was not picked as a finalist and that he returned after being granted the COVID year, he was eligible to be nominated again. And once again, Dolabella’s impact was worthy enough to be selected for a second time as a candidate. The graduate-student came to Marshall in 2017 along with coach Grassie. Dolabella scored the golden goal in the second overtime to defeat Charlotte in the 2019 Conference USA Tournament, earning the Herd its first C-USA Championship and a berth to the NCAA Tournament.
Dolabella has a long list of accolades from on and off the field. He is a two-time all-conference selection as well as a four-time C-USA Academic Medalist for maintaining a cumulative grade point average of 3.75 or better. This past academic year, Dolabella was named the C-USA Men’s Soccer Scholar Athlete of the Year. After already placing his name among the best in program history for helping to bring a National Championship to Huntington, Dolabella is beginning to write his name in the record books as well. He is tied for seventh all-time in career goals with 18, tied for eighth in total career points with 50 and tied for 10th in career assists with 14.
Dias, like Dolabella, has a long list of accolades to his name. Dias finished the 2020-21 season with a trophy case full of awards including being name the Conference USA Player of the Year, Offensive MVP and the Michael L. Slive Co-Male Athlete of the Year. The senior also received a lot of national attention along the way as a United Soccer Coaches First Team All-American and a MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist. Dias nailed the final PK during the penalty-kick shootout to take down No. 1 Clemson in the NCAA Tournament. He also assisted on the game-winners of the Elite 8, Final Four and the National Championship.
Dias, nicknamed “The Magician,” finished this past season among the nation’s leaders in assists on the way to helping bring home the National Championship. His rise as a scoring and passing threat has led to him being named the 2021 Conference USA Preseason Player of the Year as well as being placed on the MAC Hermann Trophy Preseason Watch List. He has excelled in the classroom as well as a two-time member of the Conference USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll. Dias is also looking to place his name throughout the record book. He is already tied for sixth all-time in career assists with 15 and is right outside the top 10 in career goals (13) and total points (41).
Both players are natives of Brasilia, Brazil, and along with another native Brazilian in Vincius Fernandes, they have been lighting up the goal this season for the Herd. Dolabella is tied with Fernandes for the team lead in goals with five while Dias is second in goals (four) and assists (five). Dolabella is second on the team in total points with 14 and Dias is right behind him with 13. Fernandes leads the way with 16. Dolabella is fifth in the NCAA in game-winning goals with three. Dias ranks 13th in the nation in total assists and 16th in total points.
The class of candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists later in the season. The Senior CLASS Award winners from men’s and women’s soccer will be announced during the 2021 NCAA College Cup championships in December.
For all of the latest information on the Marshall men’s soccer team, follow the Herd on Twitter @HerdMSoccer, Facebook at Marshall University Soccer and on www.herdzone.com.
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