University of Virginia Men's Soccer Player Jacob LeBlanc Announces He Will Forego His Senior Year at UVa
Jan. 7, 2003
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – University of Virginia men’s soccer player Jacob LeBlanc (Palo Alto, Calif./Palo Alto) has announced he will forego his senior year at Virginia to pursue a professional playing career in the sport by entering Major League Soccer (MLS). LeBlanc has signed a contract with MLS and will await his selection in the upcoming Eighth Annual MLS SuperDraft on January 17, 2003 at the Kansas City Convention Center. LeBlanc is the second UVa men’s soccer play to forego his senior year following the conclusion of Virginia’s 2002 men’s soccer season. LeBlanc’s teammate, Alecko Eskandarian, also declared he would be forgoing his senior year on December 16, 2002. The following statements were made by LeBlanc:
Jacob LeBlanc’s Opening Statement –
“I have signed a contract to play professional soccer in the MLS (Major League Soccer). I will be entering my name in the upcoming MLS SuperDraft later this month on January 17th in Kansas City. I am very excited about everything that lies ahead for me in my playing career now that I have made this decision. I hope to improve my overall skills and to take my game to the next level. I feel the MLS will help prepare me for this next step in my career.”
Q: How difficult was it for you to leave Virginia early?
A: “It was difficult for me to leave UVa early because I have really enjoyed myself here. My friends, teammates and coaches, everyone has been great to me. I feel Virginia is the best program in the country to develop soccer players, and being a part of that will help me with my own future as a player. Leading up to my decision, I was guided by people like George Gelnovatch and I was given great advice by people who are important to me and who are people that I trust. These people helped make this decision a lot easier for me to make.”
Q: What impact did those who are close to you have in making this decision?
A: “There have been so many people that have helped me out and made a difference for me here at UVa. I have to thank my family, my friends and everyone at UVa from the training room staff to the equipment room staff, they were all a big part in getting me to where I am today. I especially have to thank my coaches at Virginia, because they all helped facilitate my transition from high school to the pros. I was originally going to enter professional soccer straight out of high school, but later decided to come here to UVa. The coaching staff was extremely beneficial in helping me develop into a better soccer player which helped me make this decision.”
Jacob LeBlanc’s Closing Thought –
“I am very excited to now be able to concentrate solely on soccer. I want to improve my game to become the best player that I possible can and to see what I can do and where I can go from here.”
LeBlanc played three seasons of soccer at Virginia as a midfielder for head coach George Gelnovatch. He started 42 or the 62 games he appeared in and recorded 22 career points resulting from 16 career assists and three career goals. Half of LeBlanc’s 16 career goals (eight) were game-winning assists. He also took 43 shots in his career. In 2002 (as a junior), LeBlanc led Virginia with a team-high eight assists and dished out a team-high four game-winning assists for the season. He was named to the ACC All-Tournament Team and was selected Second Team All-State by the Virginia Sports Information Directors of America (VaSID). In 2001 (as a sophomore), LeBlanc was selected to Soccer America’s Team of the Week on October 1 and was again named Second Team All-State by the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID).
Here is a statistical look at LeBlanc for his career at Virginia:
Jacob LeBlancMidfielderJunior5-11180Palo Alto, Calif. (Palo Alto)
Jacob LeBlanc’s Career Stats:
Year GP/GS Sh G A Pts2000 24/5 7 1 2 42001 20/20 22 2 6 102002 18/17 14 0 8 8Totals 62/42 43 3 16 22
In 2002: Started 17 of the 18 games he appeared in as a midfielder … scored eight points resulting from a team-high eight assists … half of his assists (four) on the season were game-winners … named to the ACC All-Tournament Team … selected Second Team All-State by the Virginia Sports Information Directors of America (VaSID) … recorded his first point of the season when he assisted Alecko Eskandarian on a goal in Virginia’s 4-0 shutout victory over N.C. State (9/28) … dished out two assists, including the game-winner, in Virginia’s 4-1 victory over Duke (11/14) in the ACC Championship … posted the game-winning assist in Virginia’s 3-1 win against #18 Duke (10/20) … recorded the game-winning assist on Kenny Arena’s header in Virginia’s 2-1 victory over American (10/26) … dished out the game-winning assist in Virginia’s 3-2 win over Old Dominion (10/23) … assisted on Alecko Eskandarian’s goal when he gathered a headed ball from teammate Ryan Kelly before sending a pass upfield to Eskandarian that resulted in a score in Virginia’s 3-0 shutout victory over Marshall (10/2) … assisted on Alecko Eskandarian’s goal in Virginia’s 5-2 victory over Liberty (10/16) … made his first start of the season in Virginia’s 4-1 victory over Virginia Commonwealth (9/6) in the Maryland/FILA Classic … started all three games for UVa as a midfielder in the ACC Championship (11/14-17) … started both of Virginia’s games in the Maryland/FILA Classic against Virginia Commonwealth (11/6) and Penn State (11/8) as a midfielder … took his first shot of the season in Virginia’s 4-0 shutout victory over N.C. State (9/28) … lettered.
In 2001: Recorded 1,592 minutes of playing time after starting all 20 games (team-high) he appeared in … finished fourth on the team with 10 points resulting from six assists (second on the squad) and two goals … four of his six assists were game-winners … selected to Soccer America’s Team of the Week on October 1 … named Second Team All-State by the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) … recorded the game-winning assist when he teamed with teammate Marshall Leonard on Ryan Gibbs’ game-winning goal in Virginia’s 2-0 shutout victory over North Carolina (9/22) … scored his second goal of the season when he one-timed a cross from teammate Ryan Gibbs for UVa’s third goal in Virginia’s 3-0 shutout victory over Maryland (11/4) … recorded the game-winning assist when he sent a corner kick to teammate Jonathan Cole, who headed in the cross for the game-winning goal in Virginia’s 4-0 victory over Temple (10/2) … posted the game-winning assist when he sent a corner kick to teammate Jonathan Cole, who headed the ball into goal for the game-winning score, and scored his first goal of the season in Virginia’s 2-0 shutout victory over N.C. State (9/30) … recorded an assist when he teamed with Ryan Gibbs on a cross to Kyle Martino for a goal in Virginia’s 2-0 shutout victory over Clemson (10/13) … connected with teammate Kenny Arena for an assist when he sent a cross off of a corner kick that Arena headed in for a goal in Virginia’s 2-0 victory over East Carolina (10/24) … started for UVa as a midfielder in both games of the 2001 Virginia Soccer Classic … played 70 minutes in UVa’s 2-1 victory over Liberty (8/31) and 113 minutes in the Cavaliers’ 2-2 tie with UCLA (9/2) in the 2001 Virginia Soccer Classic … started for UVa as a midfielder in both games of the 2001 Maryland/Fila Classic … played 90 minutes in Virginia’s 4-2 victory over American (9/7) and 58 minutes in UVa’s 3-2 win over Creighton (9/9) in the 2001 Maryland/Fila Classic … lettered.
In 2000: Recorded 928 minutes of playing time after starting five of the 24 games he appeared in … scored four points on two assists and one goal … scored his first collegiate goal on a breakaway set up by teammates Alecko Eskandarian and Steve Totten in Virginia’s 7-1 victory over Jacksonville (9/3) in the Virginia Soccer Classic … played 31 minutes in Virginia’s 5-0 victory over Lehigh in the first round of the NCAA Tournament (11/19) … dished out an assist to Ryan Gibbs who scored UVa’s second goal in Virginia’s 3-0 victory over Duke in the ACC Tournament Semifinals (11/10) … recorded his first collegiate assist after starting in Virginia’s 2-0 shutout victory over Providence (10/29) when he sent a cross to teammate Alecko Eskandarian, who put the pass away for a goal … started his first collegiate game against Indiana (9/10) in the Maryland/Fila Invitational … started in UVa’s final two regular season games of the year and helped the Cavaliers post 2-0 shutout victories over Providence (10/29) and Maryland (11/3) … played 45 minutes in Virginia’s 3-1 victory over Elon (10/18) … played 42 minutes in Virginia’s 6-1 victory over N.C. State (10/1) … played 32 minutes in Virginia’s 2-1 victory over St. John’s in the second round of the NCAA Tournament (11/26) … lettered.
High School: Played for coach Mike Arzabel at Palo Alto in 1999 and 2000 … named to the 2000 All-San Jose Mercury News team … had the option to play professional soccer coming out of high school … played on the under-18 U.S. National Team and was a member of the under-20 pool.
Personal: Born on February 2, 1981 in Auburn, Calif.
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