Soccer stock

Soccer Stock

John J. Watkins, File, The Times

Miguel David made history at Purdue Northwest this week when the senior men’s soccer goalkeeper was named the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference defensive player of the week.

David, a native of Spring Valley, California, tallied five saves in a double-overtime scoreless draw with Bethel on Saturday afternoon at Dowling Park in Hammond. The match marked David’s second straight shutout as the Pride are 1-1-1 in the early season.

David becomes the first player in Purdue Northwest history to earn a GLIAC award as well as the first to be honored since the Pride moved to NCAA Division II athletics.

“Miguel has worked extremely hard in training and thoroughly deserves this award,” PNW men’s soccer coach Ryan Hayes said in a released statement.

David began his collegiate career at Purdue Calumet and earned First Team Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference honors in his first two years with the Peregrines and once again last year when the team became Purdue Calumet. This is the fifth time that David has won a Defensive Player of the Week award in his career.

“Although this is an individual award, for me the whole team should be recognized,” Hayes said. “Miguel doesn’t receive this accolade if the team in front of him doesn’t work together collectively as a unit. In my opinion, the whole (team) are acknowledged by Miguel received this award, so congratulations to Miguel and the team.”

The Pride will play their first GLIAC conference game at 3:30 p.m. Friday when they host Tiffin at Pepsi Field. Purdue Northwest will continue its five-game homestand with another conference game against Ashland on Sunday afternoon.

Valparaiso finally at home: It’s not a rarity for mid-major programs to have to hit the road at the beginning of the season to find quality competition.

For the Valparaiso men’s soccer and volleyball programs, that provides a unique challenge as head coaches Mike and Carin Avery are married and rarely get to see each other throughout the early part of the year.

Valparaiso volleyball opened up its home slate Wednesday night against Eastern Illinois after starting the season with nine straight road matches, including trips to New York and South Dakota. The men’s soccer team has played five straight road matches to open the year and will play at Drake on Saturday night in a Missouri Valley Conference match before the Crusaders finally open at home on Monday night against Fort Wayne.

“It’s challenging and it takes a lot of help,” Mike Avery said. “Fortunately, we get a lot of help from her mother and we have some other friends who pitch in a lot. It’s been a difficult month.”

The men’s soccer team will play six of its final 11 matches at Brown Field this season while the volleyball team plays three of its next five matches at home before embarking on another four-game road trip. This weekend marks the end of the nonconference schedule for volleyball and Valparaiso will host its first MVC match next Friday against Northern Iowa.

“Some of the mid-major blues are that you have to go out on the road to get the kind of games you want to play,” Mike Avery said. “We always play a heavy road schedule, but this year it’s been tougher with the conference switch and having to move things around. It is what it is. Fortunately, we both have a good data plan on our phone.”