FC Dallas midfielder Brek Shea has been named U.S. Soccer’s Young Male Athlete of the Year for 2011.
Winning a U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award is the highest honor any player can receive in the United States.
"Hopefully in 2012 I get a chance to go to the Olympics and be a part of World Cup Qualifying. I'm honored to be part of this award. A lot of great players have won it."
A player can only win the Young Athlete award once.
U.S. Soccer, in a press release, cited Shea’s “breakout year on both the international and professional level.”
Shea became the first player born in the 1990s to earn a cap for the U.S. Men’s National Team.
He earned eight caps total for the USMNT and was one of just three players to play in all games coached by Jurgen Klinsmann.
Shea scored 11 goals for FC Dallas during the 2011 season and was named to the 2011 MLS Best XI.
U-23 WNT forward Sydney Leroux won the Young Female award.
Clint Dempsey won 2011 Male Athlete of the Year and U.S. Women's National Team forward Abby Wambach won 2011 Female Athlete of the Year.
Online votes at ussoccer.com count for 50 percent of the total votes. The other 50 percent is votes from national media and U.S. Soccer representatives, including National Team coaches and members of the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors.
PAST YOUNG MALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR WINNERS
1998: Josh Wolff
1999: Ben Olsen
2000: Landon Donovan
2001: DaMarcus Beasley
2002: Bobby Convey
2003: Freddy Adu
2004: Eddie Johnson
2005: Benny Feilhaber
2006: Jozy Altidore
2007: Michael Bradley
2008: Sacha Kljestan
2009: Luis Gil
2010: Gale Agbossoumonde
2011: Brek Shea