St. Paul – Thanks to his late-game heroics in Gustavus’ biggest match of the season on Saturday against St. Thomas, Zach Brown (So., Eau Claire, Wis.) has been named the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Men’s Soccer Athlete-of-the-Week. After 104 minutes on scoreless soccer between the top two teams in the league, Brown took it upon himself to push the Gusties past St. Thomas with an unassisted goal in the 105th minute.
“A thoroughly deserved accolade and it could not have gone to a nicer lad. Zach is an absolute delight to work with and great fun to be around,” said Head Coach Mike Middleton about his sophomore striker. “Zach is a natural finisher who loves to compete and score goals. He has led the line extremely well, and his movement continues to develop all the time. The timing of his runs has steadily improved and the coordination of his movement with those around him is constantly evolving. When he gets that right he is almost unstoppable at this level.”
Brown’s double-overtime game-winner put an end to the stalemate atop the league standings between Gustavus and St. Thomas, propelling the Black and Gold into sole possession of first place with 22 points. The sophomore’s goal came on his match-high sixth shot of the afternoon. Five of his six shots were on target as he played in over 87 minutes of the match.
The Eau Claire product now leads the team with 25 points (4th/MIAC) off of 11 goals and three assists. Within conference play, Brown has scored a league-best eight goals, ranking him second in the MIAC in scoring with 16 points. Although his striking ability has lit up box scores all season, it his Brown’s ability to come up with the big goal that has set him apart. Of his 11 goals on the year, eight have been game-winners and one has been a game-tying score. Brown has taken 58 shots, 31 of which have been on goal, and carries a .190 shot percentage.
It is the second time this season that Brown has been named the MIAC Men’s Soccer Athlete-of-the-Week. He also garnered the honor on Sept. 25 after tallying a three-goal week in Gustavus’ wins over Wartburg (1-0) and Saint John’s (2-1).
Because Carleton and St. Thomas will face each other on Tuesday afternoon in Northfield, the Gustavus men’s soccer team controls its own destiny as the race for an MIAC Championship is less than six days away from complete. The Gusties will first battle Crown College at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday in St. Bonifacius before facing the Scots at 1:00 p.m. in St. Paul.