CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA - The Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) announced today that Luther cross country runner Tricia Serres and Central cross country runner Austin O'Brien have been named IIAC Athletes of the Week for the week ending Sunday, November 3, 2013. The Conference also announced Performers of the Week in six fall sports plus men's and women's swimming and diving.
University of Dubuque junior Kelsey Graefen (Plainfield, Ill./Plainfield Central) repeated as the IIAC Women’s Soccer (Defensive) Performer of the Week and senior Alexandra Watkins (Northbrook, Ill./Glenbard North) was named IIAC Women's Soccer (Offensive) Performer of the Week for the second time this season. The Spartans went 2-0 on the week with a 1-0 win at Simpson in the regular season finale and a 3-0 win over Simpson at Oyen Field in the 1st Round of the IIAC Tournament.
Graefen has become a weapon on corner kicks with her ability to find space and finish around the net as all four of her goals this year have come on headers with two being off corner kicks. She scored the game winning goal in the tournament game against Simpson while helping hold the Storm to six total shots and two shots on goal. Graefen has two assists to go with her four goals for a total of 10 points on the season. She has also played all 90 minutes in seven of the last eight games. Graefen has scored or assisted on a goal in four of the Spartans last five games, all wins.
Watkins has been a force on the offensive side of the field all year with her ability to breakdown a defense. Last week was no different as she scored the game winner on the road against Simpson. In the rematch with Simpson at home, she had a hand in all three UD goals with one goal and two assists. Within the Iowa Conference she ranks first in points per game (2.05) and game winning goals (5). Watkins is second in the IIAC in goals (15), points (39), and shots (76). On the national level, Watkins currently ranks 44th in Division III with 39 points and nine assists. Her 15 goals ranks 55th in DIII.
The Spartans defense leads the Iowa Conference in goals against average (0.84) and fewest goals allowed (16). Dubuque is second in the IIAC in fewest shots on goal allowed at 83 and has not allowed a goal in 394+ minutes. Offensively the Spartans lead the IIAC in assists (46) and corner kicks (135).
UD is 15-4 overall, tied for second in the IIAC at 5-2 and is ranked eighth in the NSCAA North Region Poll for November 5th.
Other UD Women’s Soccer student-athletes to be named Iowa Conference Performer of the Week during the 2013 season are: Tiffany Duncan (Defensive, 10/14/13), Kelsey Graefen (Defensive, 10/29/13), Katie Lynn (Offensive, 9/9/13), and Alexandra Watkins (Offensive, 9/2/13).
The complete list of IIAC Performers of the Week can be found at: IIAC - Athletes of the Week
UP NEXT: The Spartans play Luther College (9-8-0) in the Semifinals of the Iowa Conference Tournament on Wednesday, November 6th. Game time in Decorah is 7:00 pm.
LIVE Video/Stats available at: UD Women's Soccer Video/Stats
Follow all UD Athletics action on Twitter at: @UDubuqueSports