Oct. 16, 2002
NEW YORK, N.Y. - Major League Soccer announced today that San Jose Earthquakes goalkeeper Joe Cannon has been named the 2002 Aquafina Goalkeeper of the Year.
Cannon claimed the honor after putting together another spectacular season that included a League-leading eight shutouts in 26 games for the Quakes. A finalist for the award last season, Cannon helped the Earthquakes to the second-best record in the League and a second consecutive playoff appearance.
The Santa Clara University product and his League-leading 13 victories led the 2001 MLS Cup Champions to the top of the League standings for 22 straight weeks during the 2002 season. Only a late-season run by the Los Angeles Galaxy kept the Quakes from taking the Supporter's Shield. Cannon turned in the League's second highest goals against average (1.10) in 2002, nearly equaling his career best of 1.09, set last season. Cannon, a four-year MLS veteran, posted 100 saves on the campaign, securing his second consecutive All-Star selection along the way.
Competing in his fourth MLS season, the 27-year old put together seven wins in ten games through June and July, including six clean sheets among those victories. Known as one of the best interviews in the League, Cannon and his leadership abilities were put to the test in the absence of defender Jeff Agoos and forward Landon Donovan during the FIFA World Cup in Korea. Injuries to starting defender Troy Dayak and Agoos made Cannon the anchor of a young defensive unit deployed by San Jose coach Frank Yallop.
The Aquafina Goalkeeper of the Year is awarded to the player judged to be the best all-around goalkeeper during the regular season. Other finalists for the honor included Tim Howard of the MetroStars and Nick Rimando of D.C. United. Cannon was selected the winner in voting done by MLS coaches, general managers, players and members of the Professional Soccer Reporters Association.