KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Ilyssa Espiritu of The Master's (Calif.) has been named the NAIA National Women's Soccer Defensive Player of the Week and Mallory Rondeau of Grace (Ind.) has been tabbed National Women's Soccer Offensive Player of the Week, the national office announced Tuesday. Espiritu and Rondeau were selected based on their performances from Oct. 1 - 7 and were chosen out of a pool of conference/independent/unaffiliated groupings.
Espiritu, a goalkeeper from Bakersfield, Calif., pushed her shutout streak to 263:23 minutes with a blanking of then-No. 19 Concordia (Calif.), 2-0, on Oct. 3 and Hope International (Calif.), 4-0, on Oct. 6. The senior tallied 11 saves against the Eagles to give The Master's its second win against a ranked opponent this season. Against Hope International, Espiritu orchestrated a defensive effort that held the Royals to only three shots.
Espiritu has allowed only six goals in 1076:11 minutes of action this season for a 0.500 goals against average, which ranks eighth nationally. She owns five shutouts and is the third representative from the Golden State Athletic Conference to claim a women's soccer weekly award in 2012.
Rondeau, a forward from Lake, Ind., totaled eight points on four goals, helping the Lancers to a perfect 2-0 last week and put themselves into a tie for second in the Crossroads League standings. Against Bethel (Ind.) on Oct. 3, the freshman came off the bench to score two goals - 18th and 38th minute - and tally a team-best eight shots in Grace's 3-2 win. She continued her stellar play in the Lancers' 3-2 victory against then-No. 25 Indiana Wesleyan on Oct. 6, netting two goals, including the game-winner with five seconds remaining in regulation.
Rondeau's 11 goals lead the team and ranks 30th in the NAIA. She also paces the squad with 57 shots and 36 shots on goal this season.
For the highlight of Rondeau's last second game-winner against the Wildcats, click here (video provided by the Grace Sports Information Department).
For a complete listing of all the national statistical leaders, click here.
For the complete player of the week calendar, click here. The next NAIA National Women's Soccer Players of the Week will be announced on Oct. 16.
Offensive Nominees: Paula Vicenzo, Oklahoma Baptist; Kelly Ross, Columbia (Mo.); Amanda Couch, Vanguard (Calif.); Ariel Morris, Bethel (Tenn.); Libby Storie, Oklahoma Wesleyan; Acacia Johnson, Northwest (Wash.); Courtney Richards, Doane (Neb.); Joy Reyes, Southwestern (Kan.); Kristina Stammer, Point Park (Pa.); Courtney Wilcut, Huston-Tillotson (Texas); Kelsey Langille, Cumberland (Tenn.); Katlyn Krysiak, Madonna (Mich.); Teagan Wood, Milligan (Tenn.); Kandice Kiernan, Mount Mercy (Iowa); Taryn Pardoe, Northwood (Fla.); Bethany Smith, Benedictine (Kan.); Christy Lachappelle, Mobile (Ala.); Florence Dadson, Robert Morris (Ill.); Kirsty Montignani, Rocky Mountain (Mont.); Claudia Diaz, UC Merced (Calif.).
Defensive Nominees: Courtney Smith, Saint Mary (Neb.); Sarah Regalado, Texas at Brownsville; Felicia Reimann, Morningside (Iowa); McKenzie Guth, Viterbo (Wis.); Destinee Evans, Ottawa (Kan.); Kristen Morency, John Brown (Ark.); Michelle Marcus, Davenport (Mich.); Briana Carlin, Carroll (Mont.); Shelby Schiraldi, Baker (Kan.); Emily Kuehn, Shawnee State (Ohio); Stephanie Kirvan, William Woods (Mo.); Jamie Speidel, Indiana Wesleyan; Christina Salazar, St. Thomas (Fla.); Gillian McMahon, Mobile (Ala.); Amber Zukowski, St. Francis (Ill.); Caroline Mellard, Montreat (N.C.); Tori Talbutt, Concordia (Ore.); Kayla Cisneroz, Menlo (Calif.); Jennifer Loewen, Martin Methodist (Tenn.).
2012 Women's Soccer Players of the Week (Offensive; Defensive)
Week 1 (Sept. 4): Kelsey Langille, Cumberland (Tenn.); Indigo Recker, Concordia (Ore.)
Week 2 (Sept. 11): Jordan Davidson, Vanguard (Calif.); Helena Hansson, Embry-Riddle (Fla.)
Week 3 (Sept. 18): Kirsty Montignani, Rocky Mountain (Mont.); Bekah Garvin, Concordia (Calif.)
Week 4 (Sept. 25): Kelsey Langille, Cumberland (Tenn.); Mallory Conrad, Bethel (Ind.)
Week 5 (Oct. 2): Karly Linton, Spring Arbor (Mich.); Katie Zenz, Grand View (Iowa)
Week 6 (Oct. 9): Mallory Rondeau, Grace (Ind.); Ilyssa Espiritu, The Master's (Calif.)