Van Deventer Honored as MVC Defensive Player of the Week
Oct. 8, 2013Valley Weekly Release
ST. LOUIS - Sophomore defender Abby Van Deventer is the Missouri Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Week, as announced by the league office Tuesday morning. It is the first weekly award from the conference of Van Deventer's career. Her award is also the sixth for the Redbirds as a whole this season, and second-straight Defensive Player of the Week honor.
Van Deventer started at center back for the 10th-straight game, and played all 90 minutes for the eighth-straight time, in the Redbirds' 2-1 win at Indiana State, Friday. Van Deventer and the defense combined to hold Kate Johnson, who came in ranking second in the Valley with seven goals and 16 points, to no shots. Van Deventer's presence was particularly vital when fellow starting center back Alyse Williams went down with an injury in the first half and did not return.
The emergence of Van Deventer has been crucial to a defensive turnaround for ISU, as the Redbirds are allowing just 1.25 goals-per-game in the eight-straight matches she has started and played all 90 minutes in, compared to a 2.00 average for the season. Van Deventer's season is also particularly impressive considering she played in 18 matches last season as a forward, before shifting to the back line for the 2013 campaign.
The Redbirds (7-6-0, 1-0-0 MVC) continue Valley play against Loyola, Sunday afternoon at Adelaide Street Field. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m.
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