FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – The Lumberjacks earned a pair of notable distinctions on Tuesday, as the team earned its first ever NSCAA regional ranking and senior defender Kristi Andreassen was named Big Sky Defensive Player of the Week for the third time this season. The Lumberjacks entered the NSCAA/HendricCars.com Pacific region poll at No. 10, while Andreassen's third Defensive Player of the Week award, along with junior goalkeeper Tori Rocke's award last week, gave NAU four-straight weeks of earning the accolade.
After breaking the school and Big Sky record with their sixth consecutive shutout on Saturday at Weber State, NAU received its first ever regional ranking in the NSCAA (National Soccer Coaches Association of America) poll. A pair of NAU's non-conference opponents, USC and Arizona State, also appear in the Pacific region poll at No. 4 and 6, respectively. Loyola Marymount, who NAU defeated 2-0 on September 26, is ranked 6th in the West region poll.
A key contributor to the Lumberjack's shutout streak, which has reached a school-record 529 minutes and 35 seconds, Andreassen started and played every minute at center back of the Lumberjack's 0-0 tie at Idaho State and 2-0 win at Weber State last week. She also scored the game winning goal on a free kick against Weber State, extending her team- leading scoring total to six goals and 14 points this season. The Lumberjacks four-straight Defensive Player of the Week awards are the first such streak in the Big Sky since NAU accomplished the feat during the first four weeks of the season in 2007.
The Lumberjacks host their first Big Sky home games of the season this weekend, starting with a 3 p.m. match against Sacramento State on Friday in Lumberjack Stadium.