National Team Of The Week

College Soccer News - National Team of the Week - Week Ending November 18, 2018

The College Soccer News National Team of the Week reflects impressive performances in a very competitive first week of play in the 2018 NCAA Tournament.  Playmakers on both sides of the ball steped up during the week to make the big plays that were required to help their teams survive and advance when the level of competition makes the margin for error very small.  Five of the sixteen seeds didn't advance to the Sweet Sixteen.     

Ibrahima Diop

Freshman

Forward 

Connecticut 

Diop scored three goals including the game winning-goal in overtime to enable Connecticut to come from two goals down to defeat Rhode Island 4 to 3 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.  UConn's season subsequenlty came to an end with they fell to Indiana 4-0 in the second round. 

Nathaniel Crofts

Sophomore 

Forward 

Virginia

Crofts scored twice to help power UVA past Furman 2-0. His first goal was out of a breakaway set up by a nice cross from teammate Daryl Dike. His second goal came after receiving a through ball from Kennedy Nwabia. The Cavaliers travel to face Notre Dame in South Bend on Sunday.  The two teams played to a scoreless draw on October 23. 

Aaron Ward-Baptiste

Senior

Forward 

James Madison 

Ward-Baptiste scored after receiving a cross from Yannick Franz and contriubted an assist on one of Manuel Ferriol's goals in JMU's 3-0 win over HIgh Point.  He also scored what proved to be the game-winning goal in the Dukes' 2-1 win over number five seeded North Carolina to advance to face Virginia Tech. 

Manuel Ferriol

Junior

Midfielder 

James Madison

Ferriol had a productive week for a red hot JMU team.  He scored out of a free kick put in play by Aaron Ward-Baptiste and scored with an assist from Niclas Mohr in the Dukes' 3-0 win over High Point. He also controlled and drove the rebound of Petur Thorsteinsson's shot into the net in JMU's 2-1 win over UNC. The Dukes advance to face Virginia Tech in Blacksburg in the Sweet Sixteen.   

Trevor Swartz

RS Senior

Midfielder 

Indiana 

Swartz is a playmaker who made his presence known in Indiana's 4-0 win over Connecticut when he contributed an assist on the goals scored by teammates Anderw Gutman, Timy Mehl, and Spencer Glass. The number two seeded Hoosiers improve to 18-2-1 and advance to host Air Force in the third round of the NCAA Tourney. 

Kalil ElMedkhar

Sophomore

Midfielder

Kentucky 

Elmedkhar scored twice in Kentucky's 4-0 win over Portland.  His first goal was set up by a double assist from Jason Reyes and Sam Stockton.  His second score was off a give and go with teammate JJ Williams who also had a two goal evening.  The Wildcats now host a  surging Lipscomb University team. 

Issa Rayyan 

Freshman

Midfielder 

Duke

Rayyan alertly secured the rebound of junior Daniele Proch's shot and deposited it into the back of the net to give Duke a 1-0 win over a determined Pacific team.  The goal was Rayyan's sixth of the year to date and the his fifth in the past six contests. The Blue Devils will host Maryland in the Sweet Sixteen next Saturday. 

Dylan Nealis

Junior

Defender 

Georgetown 

Nealis scored in the eighty-eighth minute of play making a nice move into the box that gave him the angle needed to get off a shot that found its way into the back of the net. The goal provided the edge Georgetwon needed to top West Virgina 1-0.  The Hoyas  improve to 13-4-3 and will host Michigan State in the Sweet Sixteen.  

Donovan Pines

Junior

Defender 

Maryland

Pines was part of a stout Terp backline that shutout a very competitive North Carolina State team 2-0 to earn the right to advance to face Duke in the Sweet Sixteen.  Pines also contributed a helper on teammate Sebastian Elney's goal. 

James Sims

Senior

Defender

Air Force 

Sims was part of a solid  Air Force defensive effort that shutout Central Arkansas 4-0 and topped a talented Denver team 2-1. He also contributed a goal in the win over Central Arkansas. Air Force advances to the Sweet Sixteen for the first time since 1993 where they will face Indiana on Sunday. 

Adbi Mohamed

Senior

Defender 

Akron

Mohamed made an impact on both sides of the ball in Akron's 3-1 win over Rider 3-1 and 3-1 victory over Syracuse 3-1. He was a key part of a Zip defense that held both opponents in check. He also contributed a goal and an assist in the contest with Syracuse. Akron advances to face number one seed Wake Forest in the Sweet Sixteen.   

Tanner Beason

RS Junior

Defender

Stanford

Beason converted a penalty kick that was created when when he was fouled in the box. He also was at the heart of a Cardinal defense that was tested but secured a 2-0 shutout win over a game UC Irvine team.  Stanford improves to 12-3-4 and advances to face St. Mary's on Sunday in what looks to be a great college soccer match. 

Chris Zappia

RS Senior

Goalkeeper

Lipscomb

Zappia made the big saves that he needed to make to hold Washington scoress during regulation and overtime.  Lipscomb then prevailed in a penalty kick shootout.  He also made eight saves to anchor a Lipscomb defense that shutout UCF 1-0 in Orlando.  The Bisons now travel to Lexington where they will tangle with number three seed Kentucky.