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Local briefs: Saint Francis coach, player saluted

Jason Walcutt
Jason Walcutt
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Monday, October 28, 2013 07:29 pm
University of Saint Francis head soccer coach Mitch Ellisen and Cougars' leading scorer Jason Walcutt have been voted winners of two of the four major Crossroads League postseason awards.Ellisen has been named Crossroads League Coach of the Year after the Cougars went from worst to a tie for first in the league in 2013. USF finished 1-8 in 2012 and finished 10th in the CL.

Walcutt is the first USF player ever selected for the CL Offensive Player of the Year award. The Carroll High School grad finished the regular season with 17 goals, the most since Mark Sabino scored 17 in 2001. He has had six game-winning goals for the Cougars, which ranks No. 3 in NAIA. Last week Walcutt became the first USF play selected NAIA Player of the Week after scoring two game-winning goals, three overall, to help USF tie for the CL regular-season crown with 21 points, 7-2 in CL play.

Ellisen, who was born in Lubbock, Texas, guided the Cougars to their first conference title since 2003 and third overall in the 50th season of competition.

USF finished 13-4-1 overall, the most wins since Ellisen guided the Cougars to the 2003 Mid-Central College Conference title and a 13-9-1 record. Ellisen is 144-142-15 in his 15th season as USF head coach including Saturday's 3-2 win over Taylor in the opening round of the Crossroads League Tournament. This is his 22nd season as a head coach and he has a record of 224-188-21. Ellisen graduated from the University of Charleston (W. Va.) in 1983.

Walcutt became the first player in 50 years of USF soccer to earn NAIA Offense Player of the Week on Tuesday. He scored two game-winning goals for USF and passed his uncle, Carlos Cruz (1991-94), on the USF career goals scored list with 37. Cruz finished with 35. On Saturday, Walcutt scored his 18th goal of the season and is now tied for fifth on the USF career list with 38. His 18 goals this season is the most since Brian Barker scored 28 in 1981 and ranks No. 4 on the USF single-season list behind Barker who had 20 in 1980 and 19 in 1979.

The Carroll High School graduate is No. 3 in NAIA game winning goals (6), No. 6 in goals scored (18) and No. 10 in points scored (39) this season. Walcutt has five multigoal games this season with a high of three against Indiana Tech.FRENCH LICK, Ind. – After the first round of the Thrill at the Hill, Indiana Tech's Tyler Willette sits atop the leaderboard with the Warriors in second overall on Monday afternoon at the Donald Ross course.

Willette paced the Orange and Black on the tourney's first day with a two-over par 73 to lead the 40-golfer field. While he had just two birdies on the round, Willette was third on the day with 11 pars and was one of two people to finish the par fives under par (-1). Tom Kocks joined Willette in the top-10, tying for eighth as he carded an 18-hole total of 78.

Zach Wetzel shot an 82 with Brandon Bailey (83) and Nate Kolmerten (85) rounding out the scoring for the Tech Black, who finished the day with a team score of 316.

The Warriors Orange team finished the first round with a 354 led by Ethan Galloway who carded an 84. Tyler Turnwald bested teammate Zach Clouse by one stroke with an 88 while Dan Novitski concluded the scoring for Tech with a 93.

Parkland Community College sits atop the leaderboard with a 307, placing four of their five golfers in the top-10 with three in the top six. Tech Black is nine strokes back with Marian “B” (317), Marian “C” (319) and Madonna (319) rounding out the top five.

The final round will begin with a 9 a.m. shotgun start Tuesday morning, weather permitting.Fort Wayne's Emily Spencer and IUPUI's Beth Howard were named The Summit League Volleyball Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week for their performances Oct. 21-27. Spencer captures her sixth career Offensive Player of the Week honor and her second-straight after leading the Mastodons to an undefeated weekend (2-0) over the top-two teams in the league. In a sweep of Denver, she tallied 19 kills and a hit a .378. The junior outside hitter followed that up with her seventh double-double of the season recording 26 kills, her second-most kills in a match this season, 13 digs and a .379 hitting percentage. For the week, Spencer posted 45 kills, averaging 5.62 kills per set, nearly 1.00 kill per set over her season average (4.68). She also chipped in 19 digs, four blocks, two assists and one service ace and averaged 6.12 points per set. This award marks Spencer's fourth this season, the second most offensive honors in a single-season in league history. Howard earns her third Defensive Player of the Week award of the season and her career and her second in as many weeks after helping IUPUI to its second consecutive undefeated (2-0) weekend in league play. The Fort Wayne native posted two 15-plus dig efforts against the league's top-two teams. In a four-set victory on Friday, she tallied 17 digs as the Jaguars handed South Dakota its first league loss this season. The junior defensive specialist came back the next day to record 24 digs in another four-set win over Denver. On the week, Howard totaled 41 digs, averaging 5.12 digs per set and chipped in 12 assists.IPFW sophomore goalkeeper Sam Pavlika tied the career and set the single season career shutout record on Sunday against Omaha - her third straight clean slate - and in turn was named the Summit League Defensive Player of the Week for the first time this season and third time over her career. On Friday against South Dakota, Pavlika had four saves, while adding three more against Omaha. For the week she had a pair of shutouts, and her three consecutive shutouts are a new IPFW women's soccer record. This season Pavlika has a 1.58 goals-against average with 86 saves and five shutouts. Her career goals against average of 1.31 is almost a half-goal better than the previous career mark, while her 167 saves are fifth-most in a career in school history. The Mastodons, who are 4-0-1 in their last five matches, return to action on Friday, when the team travels to Fargo, N.D., to play the Bison in a 4 p.m. kickoff.


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