Merchant receives Scholar All-America honors

Nate Merchant was named to the United Soccer Coaches' NCAA Division III Men's Scholar All-America Team on Dec. 8, 2017. (Theophil Syslo/Bates College)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Bates College senior Nate Merchant, already the recipient of a litany of postseason honors for his senior season on the Bates men's soccer team, was recognized for his academic excellence as well on Friday, as he was named a Second Team forward on the United Soccer Coaches' NCAA Division III Men's Scholar All-America Teams. 

A rhetoric major at Bates, Merchant (Los Angeles, Calif./Crossroads School) maintains a 3.50 cumulative grade point average and is a two-time NESCAC All-Academic honoree.

Merchant, the only forward named to the Second Team, was also named All-New England Region Second Team by United Soccer Coaches last week and First Team All-NESCAC last month.

The honor comes a day after Merchant was also named one of two forwards on the First Team All-East Region by United Soccer Coaches (formerly called the NSCAA). The all-region teams are divided into First, Second and Third Teams among four regions: East, North/Central, South and West.

Merchant led Bates in both goals (6) and assists (6), for the second straight season, tying sophomore Beaufils Kimpolo-Pene (Bronx, N.Y.) in the former category for both the team lead and for fourth place in the NESCAC. Merchant played in 53 matches at forward for Bates, including 46 starts. Over his career, Merchant totaled 18 goals and 11 assists.

Merchant is also the men's soccer team's first First Team All-NESCAC selection since both Terence O'Connell and David Shear earned the honor in 2005.

Merchant's awards come on the heels of Bates' 8-6-2 season, which featured the Bobcats' most victories -- both overall and in conference play -- since 2008, as well as their first berth in the NESCAC Championship tournament since 2010.