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Pahkasalo becomes first Blue Raider to earn NAIA National Player of Week honors twice

Aleksi Pahkasalo earns his second national weekly honor of the season (LWC Athletics Photo)

Aleksi Pahkasalo earns his second national weekly honor of the season (LWC Athletics Photo)


For the second time in the 2015 season, Lindsey Wilson men’s soccer standout Aleksi Pahkasalo has been selected as the NAIA Men’s Soccer National Offensive Player of the Week, the national office announced.

With the award, Pahkasalo becomes the first Blue Raider in the history of the storied men’s program to earn the national weekly honor twice. He also picked up the national recognition earlier this season on Sept. 8. Prior to his award on Sept. 8, former Blue Raider Eddy Campbell was the last student-athlete to earn the honor back in 2011.

Last week, Pahkasalo exploded for six goals and five assists in Lindsey Wilson’s 14-0 win over Pikeville (Ky.). The five assists set a new program record, while his goals and total points (17) were both one shy of matching program records.

He did not score in the Blue Raiders’ tilt with No. 1-ranked Rio Grande in the NAIA Game of the Week on Saturday, recording just three shots.

On the national level, Pahkasalo ranks No. 1 in total points (39), No. 2 in goals (16) and No. 5 in both shots per game (5.56) and total assists (7). His total goals, shots, and shots on goal all lead the Mid-South Conference.

Freshman Ploeg named Women’s Player of the Week

A day after earning Mid-South Conference Women’s Soccer Offensive Player of the Week honors, Lindsey Wilson freshman Yvonne Ploeg has been named the NAIA Women’s Soccer Offensive Player of the Week.

The conference and national award are both career firsts for the native of Grootegast, Netherlands.

Ploeg becomes the first Blue Raider to earn the weekly national award since former student-athlete Mia Persson earned the honor back in 2012, and just the third student-athlete in program history.

The national recognition comes three days after Ploeg recorded her first-career hat trick in No. 1 Lindsey Wilson’s 6-3 road win over No. 5 Martin Methodist on Saturday. She also recorded an assist in the win. It was the lone contest she appeared in last week after sitting out the previous three games with an injury.

Lindsey Wilson women retain No. 1 NAIA ranking

The Lindsey Wilson women’s soccer team retained its No. 1 ranking in the latest NAIA Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, as announced by the national office.

The Blue Raiders received 17 first-place votes and 528 total voting points in the poll.

Lindsey Wilson (6-0-2) held onto the No.1 ranking in the coaches’ poll by going into former No. 5-ranked Martin Methodists’ Grissom Pitch and defeating the RedHawks 6-3 on Saturday.

Joining the Blue Raiders in the top five are No. 2 Mobile (Ala.), who received the remaining two first-place votes and 513 points, No. 3 Northwestern Ohio, who earned 483 points, No. 4 Keiser (Fla.), who garnered 465 points, and No. 5 Benedictine (Kan.), who was the recipient of 461 points.

The Blue Raiders are joined in the coaches’ poll by fellow Mid-South Conference member Campbellsville (Ky.), who jumped into the top 25 at No. 19, while Cumberland (Tenn.) and Georgetown (Ky.) received votes.

The Blue Raiders come home to face Cumberlands (Ky.) on Wednesday in Walter S. Reuling Stadium.

From LWC Athletics

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