By Chad Waller, Director of Communications and Sports Information
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Luke Baxter of Bellevue (Neb.) has been named the NAIA National Men's Soccer Defensive Player of the Week and Joe Sbarro of Benedictine (Kan.) has been tabbed National Men's Soccer Offensive Player of the Week, the national office announced Tuesday. Baxter and Sbarro were selected based on their performances from Sept. 17 - 23 and were chosen out of a pool of conference/independent/unaffiliated groupings.
Baxter, a 6-foot senior goalkeeper from Lincolnshire, England, was part of a defense to shut out then-No. 16 Hastings (Neb.). In the 1-0 win on Sept. 18, Baxter compiled eight saves in 90 minutes. The zero goals scored by Hastings is a first since Oct. 18, 2011 - a span of 18 matches.
On the season, Baxter is 2-5-0 in goal with a 1.520 goals allowed average in 473 minutes.
Sbarro, a six-foot junior forward from Kansas City, Mo., recorded a pair of hat tricks in two victories for the Ravens last week. In the 7-0 win over Briar Cliff (Iowa) on Sept. 19, Sbarro went for his first hat trick of the year. On Sept. 22 against Friends (Kan.), he found the back of the net three more times. He has posted seven goals in the past three matches - in the five matches prior to that, he totaled one goal.
In the NAIA statistical rankings, Sbarro is 18th in goals (8) and 19th in goals per game (1.0).
For a complete listing of all the national statistical leaders, click here.
For the complete player of the week calendar, click here.
Offensive Nominees: Jorge Orona, Southwest (N.M.); Willie Spurr, Evergreen (Wash.); Jerome Joof, Sterling (Kan.); Luke Winter, Tennessee Wesleyan; Jake Miller, Doane (Neb.); Agustin Concha, Hannibal-LaGrange (Mo.); Christian Ramirez, Concordia (Calif.); Aaron Scott, Grand View (Iowa); Tyler Fischer, Aquinas (Mich.); Cliff Evans, Asbury (Ky.); Richard Isberner, Rio Grande (Ohio); Caleb Longenecker, Goshen (Ind.); Lucas Cordeiro, Oklahoma Wesleyan; Jhonathan Rico, St. Thomas (Fla.); Oliver Gore, Rocky Mountain (Mont.); Raphael Bonelle, Mid-America Christian (Okla.); Dominic O'Connor, Jamestown (N.D.); Peter Bannister, Cardinal Stritch (Wis.); Juan Hernandez, Bethel (Tenn.); Adis Islamovic, Southern Poly (Ga.); Solomon Mensah, Talladega (Ala.).
Defensive Nominees: Juan Maya, Huston-Tillotson (Texas); Collin Harlow, Evergreen (Wash.); Max Malachiyev, Campbellsville (Ky.); Luca Licciardi, Vanguard (Calif.); Nick Seeley, Sterling (Kan.); Sam Clare, Tennessee Wesleyan; Stephen Lunney, Martin Methodist (Tenn.); Steven Conway, Thomas (Ga.); Frazer McKinlay, Point Park (Pa.); Aurelien Norest, MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.); Mike Sweers, Aquinas (Mich.); Conor Thomas, Grand View (Iowa); Caleb Palumbo, Mount Vernon Nazarene (Ohio); Jack Hayes, Lyon (Ark.); Elijah Gibson, Mobile (Ala.); Brock Vorwald, St. Gregory's (Okla.); Lewis Wilcox, Midland (Neb.); Kyle Held, Saint Xavier (Ill.); Taylor Ita, Rocky Mountain (Mont.); Joan SanMarti, Embry-Riddle (Ariz.).
2012 Men's Soccer Players of the Week (Offensive; Defensive)
Week 1 (Sept. 4): Will Monsour, Belhaven (Miss.); Henry Moody, Texas at Brownsville
Week 2 (Sept. 11): Brad Lyons, Concordia (Mich.); Andi Hoffer, Thomas (Ga.)
Week 3 (Sept. 18): Will Monsour, Belhaven (Miss.); Milco Risteski, Robert Morris (Ill.)
Week 4 (Sept. 25): Joe Sbarro, Benedictine (Kan.); Luke Baxter, Bellevue (Neb.)