ELMHURST, Ill. – Western Illinois forward Armel Kouassi was named Summit League Men's Soccer Offensive Player of the Week, while Omaha goalkeeper Joseph Ghitis and Western Illinois goalie Tim Hansen garnered the Defensive Player of the Week awards for their performances, Oct. 31-Nov. 6. The awards mark the final ones of the season.
ARMEL KOUASSI, WESTERN ILLINOIS
Jr. // F // Homewood, Ill.
- Earned his first career Offensive Player of the Week award
- Recorded his first career hat trick in Saturday's 4-1 win over Fort Wayne and marks just the second in the league this season
- Scored the game's first goal on a header in the 23rd minute and followed that just over five minute later with the eventual game-winner
- Tallied his third goal of the match in the 70th minute off a pass from Jacob Bevan
Also nominated: Andre Shinyashiki, Denver; Pedro Valladao, IUPUI; Xavier Gomez, Omaha; Matthew Rogers, Oral Roberts
Previous honorees: Aug. 29 – Santiago Riveros, ORU; Sept. 6 – Fazlo Alihodzic, UNO; Sept. 12 – Thilo Korperich, IPFW; Sept. 19 – Jacob Bevan, WIU; Sept. 26 – Santiago Riveros, ORU; Oct. 3 – Jacob Murphy, IPFW/Fazlo Alihodzic, UNO; Oct. 10 – Fazlo Alihodzic, UNO; Oct. 17 – Blake Elder, DU; Oct. 24 – Emmanuel Hamzat, UNO; Oct. 31 – Matthew Lieshout, FW
JOSEPH GHITIS, OMAHA
Jr. // GK // Weston, Fla.
- Collected his sixth career Defensive Player of the Week honor and fourth this season
- Earned a road win in Omaha's 3-1 victory at Oral Roberts Saturday
- Surrendered just one goal in the game for his eighth victory of the season
- Lone goal allowed was on a penalty kick that broke his scoreless minutes streak at 280:17
- Had three saves to help UNO secure a share of the regular season title and No. 1 seed
TIM HANSEN, WESTERN ILLINOIS
Fr. // GK // Eltville, Germany
- Recorded his second Defensive Player of the Week award of the year
- Went 2-0 on the week with a 1.04 goals against average, .833 save percentage and 10 total saves
- Notched a 4-1 victory over Fort Wayne, which secured WIU the No. 3 seed in the upcoming league tournament
- Also earned the win in a 2-1 Fighting Leatherneck victory at Drake
Also nominated: Josh Gray, IUPUI
Previous honorees: Aug. 29 – Reagan Dunk, DU; Sept. 6 – Joseph Ghitis, UNO/Kortne Ford, DU; Sept. 12 – Tim Hansen, WIU; Sept. 19 – Kortne Ford, DU; Sept. 26 – Jacob Weiler, UNO; Oct. 3 – Sam Hamilton, DU; Oct. 10 – AJ Fuller, DU/Joseph Ghitis, UNO; Oct. 17 – Reagan Dunk, DU; Oct. 24 – Mike Novotny, EIU/Joseph Ghitis, UNO; Oct. 31 – Mike Novotny, EIU
ABOUT THE SUMMIT LEAGUE
Celebrating its 35th season of Division I athletics, The Summit League offers 19 championship sports and has a combined enrollment of over 120,000 at nine institutions, including four located in top 60 U.S. metro populations and two land-grant universities. Member institutions include: Denver (University of Denver), Fort Wayne (Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne), IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis), North Dakota State University, Omaha (University of Nebraska Omaha), Oral Roberts University, the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University and Western Illinois University. Previously known as the Mid-Continent Conference, The Summit League rebranded in 2007 and has since produced eight NCAA Champions along with over 80 Academic All-Americans, 75 All-America selections and numerous former student-athletes competing at the highest professional level. For more information about the league, visit www.thesummitleague.org website, follow The Summit League on Twitter @thesummitleague and watch the weekly "Inside The Summit League" show at www.thesummitleague.org/itsl.