MAC Announces Women’s Soccer Players of the Week

Updated 10/8/2012

Offensive Player of the Week
Kayla Zakrzewski, Miami, Midfielder
Junior, London, Ont. (A.B. Lucas SS)
Junior Kayla Zakrzewski led Miami to a pair of MAC wins over the weekend, keeping the RedHawks undefeated in MAC play at 6-0 while extending Miami’s win streak to seven games, its longest streak since 2002. She scored a pair of goals and handed out two assists in the two matches for a six-point weekend. In Friday’s 3-0 shutout of Western Michigan, Zakrzewski had a hand in all three goals with two assists and a goal for a four-point afternoon, one shy of her season high. She set up Miami’s first two goals perfectly with textbook crosses from the flank, including assisting on the game-winning goal. She then scored a goal of her own to cap the victory with a sliding shot at the far post as she was a menace for the Broncos all day. On Sunday, Zakrzewski came up huge as she scored the game-winning goal unassisted in the 85th minute to break a 3-3 tie and give the RedHawks the win. She now has six goals on the year with Sunday’s goal her first game-winner of the year. Zakrzewski put four of the five shots she took on the weekend on target, as well.

Defensive Player of the Week 
Aubrey Buehler, Ball State, Goalkeeper
Senior, Waukesha, Wisc. (Waukesha North)
Buehler recorded a pair of shutouts over the weekend against fellow MAC West opponents Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan. She became the first goalkeeper in conference play and just the second all season to shut out Eastern Michigan, helping the Cardinals to a 1-0 victory Friday. In that game, Buehler directed the actions of a Ball State back line that stifled an Eagles team that was previously unbeaten and untied in MAC play and ranked third in the league in goals scored. In the closing minutes against EMU, she made a pair of saves and came out of the goal to play a threatening cross to secure the win. Sunday against Western Michigan, Buehler played all 110 minutes of a double-overtime contest in the net, helping Ball State to a scoreless draw. She made five saves in the contest, including four after halftime, and also secured several dangerous crosses by the Broncos. Buehler now owns three shutouts this season and 10 for her Ball State career.

Other Nominees: 
Ashley Hughes, Akron, Forward
Senior, Rochester, N.Y. (The Aquinas Institute)
Hughes found the back of the net three times this weekend as she scored one goal against Ohio Friday and both of Akron's goals Sunday against Kent State in the PNC Wagon Wheel Challenge. Hughes scored in the 86th minute against the Bobcats and opened the scoring in the 5th minute against Kent State. She also added a 68th minute penalty kick against the Golden Flashes for her team-leading seventh goal of the season. Hughes now has a team-leading 17 points on seven goals and three assists this season and she has scored in three consecutive games, finding the back of the net four times during that span. In addition, five her seven goals this season have come during MAC play.
Brianna Kanz, Akron, Defender
Sophomore, Strongsville, Ohio (Walsh Jesuit HS)
Kanz made a great defensive save off the goal line in the 86th minute in Sunday's match against Kent State to prevent a KSU goal and keep the match 2-1 in favor of Akron at the time. She played all 102 minutes in the central defense against the Golden Flashes and also played the full 90 against Ohio on Friday. Kanz has started all 13 games so far this season for the Zips.
Maimee Morris, Ball State, Midfielder
Junior, Worcestershire, England (South Bromsgrove)
Morris scored the game-winning goal in Ball State’s 1-0 victory Friday over an Eastern Michigan team that was previously unbeaten and untied in MAC play. The right-footed Morris scored with her left foot from the top of the box, beating the Eagles’ keeper into the top of the net to break a scoreless tie in the 72nd minute. Morris then led the Ball State attack in Sunday’s draw against Western Michigan with four shots in the game. She registered a team-high eight shots over the weekend’s two contests and leads the Cardinals in shots for the season.
Ainsley Wheldon, Buffalo, Goalkeeper
Junior, Waterloo, Ontario (Bluevale Collegiate Institute)
Ainsley Wheldon helped lead the Bulls to its first MAC win of the season as well as its first true road win of 2012. Wheldon made the final three stops that were put on frame to lock down her third shutout of the season against the Ohio Bobcats on Sunday. It was also her 14th career clean sheet, moving her into a three-way tie for the second most in a career in program history. She also made four saves in a hard-luck loss to Kent State on Friday night. For the season, she has 50 total saves.
Courtney Mann, Buffalo, M/F 
Sophomore, Buffalo, NY  (Frontier)
Courtney Mann scored her second goal of the season Sunday at Ohio, converting on a penalty kick in the 18th minute that would stand up as the game winner. Both of the sophomore's goals have come in MAC play this season. For the weekend, she took three total shots.
Autumn Hawkins, Central Michigan, Midfielder 
Senior Bloomington, Ind. (Bloomington HS)
Hawkins scored a hard-fought goal in the 75th minute that sent the Chippewas into overtime against Northern Illinois despite playing a player down since the 26th minute, setting CMU up for a dramatic 2-1 double-overtime win. Hawkins fought for the ball with a group of NIU defenders directly in front of goal and was able to get her foot on it and bury it in the back of the net through traffic, tying the match, 1-1. With five shots, three on goal, Hawkins led a shorthanded Chippewas squad that still managed to apply significant offensive pressure and outshoot the Huskies in shots on goal (6-3) and total shots (19-9) despite playing with just 10 players for 82 minutes.
Christen Chiesa, Central Michigan, Midfielder 
Freshman, Pittsburgh, Pa. (South Park HS) 
Weekend Results: 2-0 W at Toledo; 2-1 W (2OT) at Northern Illinois Chiesa netted the match-winning goal in the 108th minute for a 2-1 double-overtime win at Northern Illinois, sealing a comeback victory despite playing 83 minutes with only ten players on the field due to an early red card. The freshman came into the match in the 107th minute and 30 seconds later fired a shot from the near corner of the box that bent over the head of the goalkeeper to the upper near corner of the goal.
Bailey Brandon, Central Michigan, Defender
Senior Livonia, Mich. (Livonia Churchill HS)
Brandon was crucial in the Chippewas' 2-0 weekend, leading a gritty shorthanded defensive effort in one match and shining offensively with a goal in the other. On Sunday, Brandon played all 108 minutes for a Chippewas squad that played with just 10 players for 82 minutes after an early red card by a defensive teammate in a double-overtime 2-1 victory at Northern Illinois. Despite the numbers disadvantage, the CMU defense was as fierce as always, allowing just three shots on goal (one of which was a penalty kick) and six total shots to the Huskies, and none during the overtime periods. On Friday she and the CMU defense not only held defending champion Toledo scoreless in a 2-0 win for the Chippewas' seventh shutout of the season, but she also scored a goal and led the Chippewas' offense with five shots, two on goal.
Martha Stevens, Eastern Michigan, Forward
Sophomore, Bloomfield Hills, Mich. (Marian)
Stevens scored her second goal of the season Sunday to bring the Eagles back from a one-goal deficit to pull even with the RedHawks, 3-3, on the road. The goal completed a furious second-half comeback after the Eagles had fallen behind, 3-1. EMU would eventually fall by a goal to the RedHawks. 
Emily Dzik, Eastern Michigan, Defender
Sophomore, Troy, Mich. (Troy)
Dzik played all 180 minutes on the EMU defense over the weekend in games against Miami and Ball State. The sophomore has started in all 13 games so far this season.
Jaclyn Dutton,  Kent, Forward  
Junior , Bridgeport, Ohio (St. Clairsville)
Dutton tallied three of Kent State's four goals on the weekend, starting with her third game-winning goal of the season in Kent State's 1-0 shutout over Buffalo Friday. Dutton then notched her fourth multi-goal game of the season with a two-goal effort at Akron, including the game-tying goal in the 90th minute to force overtime. Dutton, who entered the week ranked 11th in the NCAA in goals per game, is now averaging 1.0 goals per game this season.
Briana Bartolone, Kent, Defender
Freshman,  Auburn, Ohio (Kenston)  
Bartolone, who played all 192 minutes for Kent State on the defense this weekend, tallied her first collegiate assist with her helper on Kent State's first goal against Akron Sunday. Bartolone was a key factor in Kent State's shutout over Buffalo on Friday and holding the Zips to just five shots in Sunday's overtime contest.
Shelbi Johnson, Northern Illinois, Forward
Senior, Bolingbrook, Ill. (Neuqua Valley)
Shelbi Jonson registered two assists off corner kicks Friday afternoon in the Huskies 2-1 come from behind win against Bowling Green. Johnson sent in Northern Illinois' equalizer in the 39th minute of play, finding Lauren Noonan at the back post where she headed her first collegiate goal to tie the match. In the final two minutes of play, the Huskies earned a corner kick where Emily Nulty took the corner and sent a short pass to Johnson who crossed the ball into the box and onto the head of Courtney Ksiazek for the game-winner. 
Courtney Ksiazek, Northern Illinois, Defender
Junior,  Naperville, Ill. (Neuqua Valley)
Junior Courtney Ksiazek got on the offensive side from her center back position versus Bowling Green, when she scored the match winner from a corner kick in the 89th minute of play. In the final two minutes of play, the Huskies earned a corner kick where Emily Nulty took the corner and sent a short pass to Shelbi Johnson who crossed the ball into the box and onto the head of Ksiazek. She helped extend the Huskies unbeaten streak to four games, the longest since 2010. On Sunday, she aided the Huskies defensive effort against defending champion Central Michigan and sent the match to double overtime. CMU scored from distance in the 108th minute of play to secure the 2-1 victory. 
Holly Harris, Ohio, Forward
Freshman, Batavia, Ohio (Batavia) 
Holly had a great weekend for Ohio Soccer, scoring two goals in the Bobcats’ Mid-American Conference matches. The freshman scored both goals—including the game winner—in Ohio’s 3-2 victory over Akron on Friday. Harris was incredibly efficient in this match, scoring her two goals in only 32 minutes of play and on two total shots. 
Because of her strong play on Friday, Harris earned the 11th start of her Bobcat career in Ohio’s game against Buffalo on Sunday. The freshman played 64 minutes and registered one shot in the match. 
Just a freshman, Harris is second on the team in goals (4), assists (2) and points (10). 
Grace Campbell, Ohio, Defender
Freshman, Wadsworth, Ohio (Wadsworth)
Grace was an important part of an Ohio defense which gave up three goals in two Mid-American Conference games this weekend. The freshman defender played the full 90 minutes in each match, serving as a solid part of the Bobcat defensive unit. Campbell showed a good balance of toughness and restraint in the weekend matches, committing very few fouls and receiving zero cautions or ejections.  Just a freshman, Campbell is playing beyond her years for Stacy Strauss and the Bobcats. Grace has started all 14 of Ohio’s games this season and is the team’s leader in minutes played with 1,275. 
Angelica Hernandez, Toledo 
Freshman, Bogota, Colombia, (Colegio el Minuto de Dios)
Freshman Angelica Hernandez scored two goals in Toledo’s 3-0 shutout victory vs. arch-rival Bowling Green on Sunday to extend its unbeaten streak against the Falcons to seven consecutive matches (5-0-2 record). Hernandez opened the scoring at the 7:35 mark of the first half with her first collegiate marker. The Bogota, Colombia native won a 50/50 ball at the top of the BGSU goal box and found herself all alone in the middle of the pitch with Falcons’ goalie Jenna Underwood. She took a quick dribble to her right and perfectly placed a shot under the outstretched arm of Underwood to give the home team an advantage it would not relinquish. In the second half, Hernandez’s registered her second goal of the match at 48:52. She received a cross from junior Rachel MacLeod along the right side about eight yards from BGSU’s end line. The first-year Rocket noticed a seam in the Bowling Green defense and blasted a shot that Underwood was able to get a hand on but was unable to stop and the ball rolled into the back of the frame to make the final score 3-0. With yesterday’s effort, Hernandez became the first Rocket to score two goals in a match in 2012.
Natalia Gaitan, Toledo, Defender
Senior , Bogota, Colombia (Colegio Nuevo Columbo Americano)
Natalia Gaitan saw action in all 180 minutes over the weekend to help Toledo split a pair of matches. In Friday’s setback to MAC West Division leader Central Michigan, Gaitan played a key role in limiting the Chippewas to only three shots in the second half. Two days later in UT’s shutout victory against arch-rival Bowling Green, Gaitan scored her second goal of the season and helped hold the Falcons to only four shots to post the important MAC win. On her second goal of the season, Gaitan initial missed a penalty kick attempt but the ball bounced right back to her and she hammered home the follow-up shot.
Michelle Watson, Western Michigan, Goalkeeper
Junior, Cincinnati, Ohio (McAuley)
Watson made four saves in WMU's 3-0 loss at undefeated Miami on Friday but rebounded with a career-best game in Sunday's 0-0 tie at Ball State. She made 12 saves, including six in the first half, four in the second half and two in the second overtime period to keep the Cardinals off the board. Her previous high was 10 saves in a loss at Buffalo last season.