Majchrzak/Getty Images

Marshall wins Visa Defender of Year

Major League Soccer has announced that Columbus Crew defender Chad Marshall was voted the Visa® Defender of the Year for the second consecutive season, and referees Alex Prus and Greg Barkey were voted as the adidas Referee of the Year and adidas Assistant Referee of the Year awards.

Marshall, the 2008 Defender of the Year and 2009 MLS All-Star, anchored a Columbus defense that allowed only 31 goals during the regular season - a record low for the Crew. Marshall played in and started 18 games during the regular season; he missed four games while serving National Team duty with the U.S. and another six games with a knee sprain at the end of the season.

Marshall's leadership helped the Crew capture their second straight Supporters' Shield trophy, awarded to the team that finishes with the best regular season record (13-7-10, 49 points). The Crew's defense allowed the third fewest goals (31) behind the Houston Dynamo (29) and Seattle Sounders FC (29).

Marshall won MLS Player of the Month honors for August after leading the Crew to a 4-1-0 record during the month, which included four shutouts. The 6-foot, 4-inch, 190-pound defender proved again that he's not only an imposing force on defense, but also poses a scoring threat whenever he gets forward. Marshall finished third on the team with four goals scored, including game-winning goals versus New York (June 27), Colorado (Aug. 1) and FC Dallas (Aug. 15).

Now in his sixth MLS season, the 25-year-old Riverside, Calif., native was the second overall pick in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft by the Columbus Crew. Marshall joins Carlos Bocanegra and Robin Fraser as the only two-time Defender of the Year award winners. Marshall led the voting ahead of Seattle Sounders FC defender Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Houston Dynamo defender Geoff Cameron, the other finalists for the award.

Prus receives the adidas Referee of the Year award for the first time in his career. A veteran center referee of MLS games, Prus has worked 169 games in 13 seasons. Prus first served as an assistant referee in MLS in 1997. He has worked five Men's Division I NCAA Final Four soccer tournaments and was the head referee for MLS Cup 2007 in Washington, D.C.

Barkey has been honored with the adidas Assistant Referee of the Year award. Barkey was one of three assistant referees to represent the United States in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. In 14 seasons with Major League Soccer, Barkey has worked 201 regular season games and 28 playoff games.

The Visa Defender of the Year earned the most votes in polling of MLS players, general managers, coaches, and members of the media. The adidas Referee of the Year and adidas Assistant Referee of the Year were earned the most votes in polling of MLS players, general managers, coaches, referees and members of the media.

MLS Defender of the Year Winners

2009: Chad Marshall - Columbus Crew
2008: Chad Marshall - Columbus Crew
2007: Michael Parkhurst - New England Revolution
2006: Bobby Boswell - D.C. United
2005: Jimmy Conrad - Kansas City Wizards
2004: Robin Fraser - Columbus Crew
2003: Carlos Bocanegra - Chicago Fire
2002: Carlos Bocanegra - Chicago Fire
2001: Jeff Agoos - San Jose Earthquakes
2000: Peter Vermes - Kansas City Wizards
1999: Robin Fraser - Los Angeles Galaxy
1998: Lubos Kubik - Chicago Fire
1997: Eddie Pope - D.C. United
1996: John Doyle - San Jose Earthquakes

adidas Referee of the Year Winners

2009: Alex Prus
2008: Jair Marrufo
2007: Brian Hall
2006: Brian Hall
2005: Brian Hall
2004: Abiodun 'Abbey' Okulaja
2003: Brian Hall
2002: Kevin Terry
2001: Paul Tamberino
2000: Paul Tamberino
1999: Paul Tamberino
1998: Paul Tamberino
1997: Esse Baharmast

adidas Assistant Referee of the Year Winners

2009: Greg Barkey
2008: Kermit Quisenberry

2009 Major League Soccer Awards Finalists

Goalkeeper of the Year Finalists
Zach Thornton - Chivas USA
Kasey Keller - Seattle Sounders FC
Donovan Ricketts - Los Angeles Galaxy

Fair Play Finalists - Individual
Kasey Keller - Seattle Sounders FC
Pat Onstad - Houston Dynamo
Steve Ralston - New England Revolution

MLS Comeback Player of the Year Finalists
Brian McBride - Chicago Fire
Ben Olsen - D.C. United
Zach Thornton - Chivas USA

Visa Defender of the Year Finalists
Geoff Cameron - Houston Dynamo
Jhon Kennedy Hurtado - Seattle Sounders FC
Chad Marshall - Columbus Crew

adidas Referee of the Year Finalists
Alex Prus
Ricardo Salazar
Kevin Stott

adidas Assistant Referee of the Year
Greg Barkey
Nathan Clement
Joe Fletcher

Rookie of the Year Finalists
Stefan Frei - Toronto FC
Omar Gonzalez - Los Angeles Galaxy
Chris Pontius - D.C. United

MLS Coach of the Year Finalists
Bruce Arena - Los Angeles Galaxy
Sigi Schmid - Seattle Sounders FC
Robert Warzycha - Columbus Crew

Volkswagen MLS Most Valuable Player Finalists
Jeff Cunningham - FC Dallas
Landon Donovan - Los Angeles Galaxy
Shalrie Joseph - New England Revolution

Newcomer of the Year
Kasey Keller - Seattle Sounders FC
Freddie Ljungberg - Seattle Sounders FC
Fredy Montero - Seattle Sounders FC

Awards Announcements Schedule

Schedule subject to change

Wednesday, November 4
Goalkeeper of the Year - Zach Thornton (Chivas USA)
Fair Play Award Individual & Team - Steve Ralston (New England Revolution) & Chicago Fire

Thursday, November 5
Visa Defender of the Year
adidas Referee of the Year & Assistant Referee of the Year

Friday, November 6
MLS W.O.R.K.S. - U.S. Soccer Foundation Humanitarian of the Year

Tuesday, November 10
MLS Newcomer of the Year
MLS Comeback Player of the Year

Wednesday, November 11
MLS Coach of the Year

Thursday, November 12
Rookie of the Year

Monday, November 16
MLS Best XI

Wednesday, November 18
Goal of the Year presented by AT&T
Save of the Year presented by Degree Men

Thursday, November 19
Volkswagen MLS Most Valuable Player

Saturday, November 21
MLS Commissioner's Award